Second day of local qualifying quiet

The second day of qualifying for the Nov. 4 elections in the New Orleans area was fairly quiet Thursday, with about 30 new names entered in races throughout the seven-parish area. In Orleans Parish, Eugene Green joined the race to fill the 97th District seat in the state House of Representatives vacated by Jared Brossett, the … Continue reading →

Essence Festival to stay in New Orleans through 2019

The Essence Festival will call New Orleans home for five more years. Although Essence Communications, which owns the festival, and Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s office have not made an official announcement about the commitment, the City Council voted Thursday to authorize the mayor to sign an “event support agreement” between the city and Essence Festival Productions. The … Continue reading →

Harrah’s powers casino market

For the second month in a row, the New Orleans casino market brought in more money than the year before, thanks to a strong performance at Harrah’s New Orleans. The three riverboats, land-based casino and slots at the Fair Grounds brought in $53.9 million in July, a 1.9 percent gain, according to figures released Thursday by State … Continue reading →

Danos will open Amelia fabrication yard

Danos, a Larose-based oil-and-gas service company, will expand its fabrication capabilities with a 120,000 square-foot facility in Amelia, a move that will eventually create 150 new jobs. The new facility, set to begin operations in October, sits on 45 acres of waterfront property on Bayou Boeuf. “The demand for our services is growing … Continue reading →

Landrieu drops attempt to ax King’s Juvenile Court seat

Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s bid to abolish the Juvenile Court seat held by indicted and suspended Judge Yolanda King came to a screeching halt Thursday when the 1st Circuit Court of Appeal rejected the city’s appeal of a lower court ruling. In response, mayoral spokeswoman Garnesha Crawford said the city would drop its fight to keep … Continue reading →

City Council approves proposed design for new Deutsches Haus

Rendering provided by Mathes Brierre Architects -- Deutches Haus rendering

Deutsches Haus can proceed with its plan for a new building next to Bayou St. John and that structure can be as Germanic-looking as the German cultural organization wants it to be, the City Council said Thursday, overruling a recommendation from the New Orleans City Planning Commission that called for the project’s architects to revise the building’s design. … Continue reading →

Man shot to death on Marrero street

A man was found shot to death early Thursday morning in Marrero, the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office said. Terry Holden, 47, of Marrero, died from a gunshot wound to the head, said Col. John Fortunato, a Sheriff’s Office spokesman. Holden was found about 6:25 a.m. in the 6600 block of 14th Street. Authorities have not … Continue reading →

Algiers man shoots, kills masked intruder

An Algiers man shot and killed a masked intruder who tried to rob him and his family at gunpoint late Wednesday night, New Orleans police said. The shooting happened at a home in the 1800 block of West Homestead Drive. The 28-year-old man and his 36-year-old wife were sitting on their backyard patio about 10 p.m. … Continue reading →

Incumbents, challengers qualify on first day of candidate sign-up period

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER -- Candidates qualified in Orleans parish for the November 4 election in Clerk of Court Arthur Morrell's office Wednesday, August 20, 2014. Here judicial candidate Monique Barial signs her paperwork with daughter Morgan, 2, on her lap.

Courthouses throughout the seven-parish metro area opened their doors Wednesday to incumbents, political newcomers and perennial challengers alike as the three-day qualifying period for the area’s most far-reaching election day of 2014 got underway. Prospective candidates have until 4:30 p.m. Friday to qualify for the Nov. 4 elections. Although it’s not a presidential election … Continue reading →

Proposed ordinance would make it easier to roust homeless

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--Pigeons and pigeon dropping are seen on tents underneath the Pontchartrain Expressway at Calliope and Camp Street in New Orleans, La. Saturday, Aug. 16, 2014. Homeless people moved further away from the Superdome after the New Orleans Health Department handed out fliers Monday asking people to leave that overpass from Claiborne to St. Charles Ave within 72 hours and moving them out on Thursday morning.

A proposed city ordinance, scheduled for a vote at Thursday’s City Council meeting, would make it easier for the police and health departments to crack down on homeless encampments that pop up in New Orleans, such as a tent city that recently appeared at Camp and Calliope streets. The ordinance is sponsored by Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell … Continue reading →

Qualifying for office

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER -- Candidates qualified in Orleans parish for the November 4 election in Clerk of Court Arthur Morrell's office Wednesday, August 20, 2014. Here judicial candidate Monique Barial signs her paperwork with daughter Morgan, 2, on her lap.

The following candidates have qualified for various races on the Nov. 4 ballot in the New Orleans area, according to the Louisiana Secretary of State’s Office website. Runoffs, where needed, will be Dec. 6. Qualifying for local elections is being held at parish clerk of court offices through Friday. D … Continue reading →

N.O. firm state’s fastest-growing

Pontchartrain Partners, a New Orleans-based construction company, ranked No. 38 on Inc. magazine’s list of the 5,000 fastest-growing businesses, the highest position for a Louisiana firm. Louisiana had 41 companies on the 2014 list, which measures revenue growth from 2010 to 2013. Sixteen of the companies were from the New Orleans metro area; 12 … Continue reading →

Argument about cellphone charger ends in shooting

Milton Newman

New Orleans police are searching for a suspect who allegedly shot a man during an argument about a cellphone charger. Police said that Milton Newman, 32, and the victim got into an argument about the electronic accessory about 4 a.m. Aug. 13 at a home in the 1200 block of Belleville Street in Algiers. During the … Continue reading →

Man shot to death Tuesday night in Algiers

A man was shot to death Tuesday night in Algiers, New Orleans police said. The shooting happened a little after 8 p.m. in the 1100 block of Thayer Street. Officers arrived to find the unidentified victim on the ground. He died on the scene from an apparent gunshot wound to the head, police said. Anyone … Continue reading →

Public Works and S&WB to operate under one roof

Advancing his plan of consolidating city control over the New Orleans Sewerage & Water Board, Mayor Mitch Landrieu announced Wednesday that Cedric Grant has finally taken the reins of one of the city’s biggest agencies and that the agency and the city have agreed to merge Grant’s former duty of overseeing city infrastructure with his new job atop … Continue reading →

Orleans Parish courthouse buzzing with judicial incumbents, hopefuls

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER -- Candidates qualified in Orleans parish for the November 4 election in Clerk of Court Arthur Morrell's office Wednesday, August 20, 2014. Here judicial candidate Monique Barial signs her paperwork with daughter Morgan, 2, on her lap.

Candidates were queuing up inside the Orleans Parish criminal courthouse Wednesday morning, catching an early start to qualifying for a slew of judgeships and other political posts. Among them, defense attorney and former Orleans Parish prosecutor Lionel “Lon” Burns said he was gearing up for a run against District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro. Early to the game … Continue reading →

Hunt Gibbs responds to claims by rival bidder for airport contract

The apparent front-runner in the contest to build Louis Armstrong International Airport’s new terminal defended its proposal and an evaluation committee’s favorable ranking of it Tuesday, arguing in a letter to the airport’s board that a challenge to that recommendation should be tossed out. In a response to a formal protest against the committee’s recommendation, Hunt … Continue reading →

DA touts stronger criminal justice system in Orleans

Advocate staff photo by A.J. SISCO  --  Orleans Parish District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro delivers his annual speech on the state of the criminal justice system at Dr. Martin Luther King Charter School in New Orleans' Lower Ninth Ward Tuesday, August 19, 2014.

Orleans Parish District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro took to the podium Tuesday night to tout a progressive agenda and vast improvements to the city’s criminal justice system, which he declared “perhaps the strongest … in the modern era of this city.” Appearing less brash and combative, and more assured of his record, after nearly six years in … Continue reading →

Qualifying opens Wednesday for Nov. 4 elections

Qualifying begins at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday for the Nov. 4 statewide elections, which include U.S. Senate and congressional races, judgeships, district attorney posts and a slew of seats in local government throughout the seven-parish metro area. While some hopefuls have announced their intention to run in recent weeks, the fields won’t officially be set until qualifying … Continue reading →

Nonprofit’s head embezzled federal funds, prosecutors say

The head of a faith-based nonprofit that has worked to rebuild the Upper 9th Ward is scheduled to appear in U.S. District Court next week on charges she stole tens of thousands of dollars from the federal government. Marcia Peterson, who served as executive director of CDC 58:12, a community development group, was charged last month … Continue reading →

Abdulrahman Zeitoun, post-Katrina literary icon, jailed yet again

Associated Press photo by Michael DeMocker -- Abdulrahman Zeitoun and his wife, Kathy, pose for a photo in their Broadmoor home in New Orleans in 2009. Abdulrahman Zeitoun, who paddled his canoe through the eerily quiet flooded landscape of New Orleans while helping people and animals after Hurricane Katrina, has been accused of violating a judge's order to stay away from his estranged wife

Abdulrahman Zeitoun stood up in court on Tuesday morning, pulled his arms back and submitted to an all-too-familiar routine: getting shackled and hauled off to jail. Once an everyman hero of the storm, the exalted protagonist in a prize-winning work of post-Hurricane Katrina literature, Zeitoun has had trouble staying free amid accusations lodged by his ex-wife, … Continue reading →

Landrieu presses legal case to eliminate indicted judge’s seat

Mayor Mitch Landrieu; Juvenile Court Judge Yolanda King

In a race against time, Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s administration filed an emergency appeal Tuesday in its bid to abolish the Orleans Parish Juvenile Court seat held by indicted Judge Yolanda King. Following a decision Monday by an East Baton Rouge Parish judge rejecting Landrieu’s request to keep King’s Section E seat off the ballot, the city … Continue reading →

NOPD ratings improved despite limited resources

No one would claim that the New Orleans Police Department is in great shape. Troop strength is at its lowest level in decades, with the force having shrunk about 30 percent in four years. Embarrassments are routine: Just last week, the department failed to alert the public that one of its officers had shot a man … Continue reading →

After four years, a changing of the NOPD guard

Advocate staff photo by MATTHEW HINTON--New Orleans Police Department Superintendent Ronal Serpas hugs  Mayor Mitch Landrieu as Interim Superintendent Michael Harrison, second left, applauds with his wife Sherri Harrison, left, in New Orleans, La. Monday, Aug. 18, 2014.

Mayor Mitch Landrieu called Ronal Serpas his most important hire. The new mayor marked the occasion in May 2010 with a news conference at Gallier Hall, heralding the return of a home-bred cop with a penchant for reform who would reshape a New Orleans police force tattered by scandal and a history of appalling misconduct and … Continue reading →

Ronal Serpas, Mitch Landrieu were an uneasy alliance

Advocate staff photo by JOHN McCUSKER -- New Orleans Chief of Police Ronal Serpas announced his retirement  at a press conference Monday, August 18, 2014. Mayor Mitch Landrieu is left.

It was bound to happen, and the timing was right for everyone. That was the official take from Mayor Mitch Landrieu and departing New Orleans police Superintendent Ronal Serpas at a news conference Monday announcing Serpas’ retirement from the department and “from public service” after 34 years as a cop. But there were signs of deepening … Continue reading →

Two more suspects booked in Lower 9th Ward shooting

Joseph Nelson

New Orleans police on Monday arrested a second man suspected of opening fire into a crowd of people last week in the Lower 9th Ward and also booked a woman they believe helped to hide one of the gunmen. The Aug. 10 shooting in the 5400 block of Burgundy Street killed two people and injured five … Continue reading →

Loyola: Departing chief Ronal Serpas to join faculty

Departing New Orleans Police Superintendent Ronal Serpas will take a teaching position in Loyola University’s Department of Criminal Justice, the university announced in a news release Monday afternoon. The university says Serpas’ position is “not new, but is a replacement position because of recent openings due to attrition” in the department, which offers both bachelor’s and master’s … Continue reading →