Mental health resources in Southeast Louisiana

In 1965, Simon and Garfunkel recorded "Richard Cory," which was based on a 19th-century poem of the same name by Edwin Arlington Robinson. Both the poem and the song were about a man who was rich, handsome, successful and kind, the envy of all who knew him — and both ended with the same line: "And Richard Cory, one calm summer night / Went home and put a bullet through his head."

Policing Bourbon

During his reforms of the New Orleans Police Department (NOPD) in the 1990s, then-Superintendent Richard Pennington instituted a ban on cops working detail shifts at privately owned bars — a practice that had existed for decades in New Orleans. There were plenty of problems with the previous system of moonlighting, including the fact that some cops made more money at it than they did from their NOPD jobs.

Jindal's war of attrition

For a guy who doesn't like frivolous lawsuits, Gov. Bobby Jindal apparently doesn't mind using one to further his political ambitions. That's the only logical explanation for the governor's decision to file a lawsuit seeking to annul a memorandum of understanding (MOU) that Jindal himself signed in 2010 — back when he supported the Common Core educational initiative.

An ugly week

Like many municipalities, the City of New Orleans hands out ceremonial proclamations and letters of welcome to citizens and visitors. Getting an official welcome to town is reserved for groups and conventions, but anyone can apply for a ceremonial proclamation, as long as the reason fits in one of the city's six categories: organizational honors; church and pastoral anniversaries; retirements; heroic deeds; a 100th birthday; or "outstanding community service by an individual, group or organization."

Recruit, retain, redeploy the NOPD

Last week, Mayor Mitch Landrieu — flanked by New Orleans Police Chief Ronal Serpas and City Council members — announced Phase 2 of the city's ongoing NOPD recruitment program. "Get Behind the Badge" was launched last summer as an attempt to bolster the number of cops on the force, which at last count was 1,139 — far from the goal of 1,600 cops the Police Department, city leaders and citizens would like to see on the streets.

A rogue department

On Friday, July 4, at 7 p.m., a terse memo was issued by Mayor Mitch Landrieu's office, stating, "Malachi Hull, who has served as Taxicab and For Hire Bureau Director since June 2011, is no longer employed by the City." Late Friday "news dumps" typically occur when a public body wants to bury bad or embarrassing news, but Hull's departure wasn't so much bad tidings as it was long overdue.

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Mayor Mitch Landrieu has announced plans for “NOLA Patrol,” a team of 50 unarmed civilian deputies that will walk the French Quarter in an attempt to help out understaffed New Orleans police. What do you think?

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