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The Best and the Worst of the Week 

BOUQUET "A Safe Way Back Home," a neighborhood environmental cleanup project, will give local residents whose homes were flooded by Hurricane Katrina an opportunity to clean up their neighborhoods. The project is a partnership between labor, environmental and community organizations such as Dillard UniversityÕs Deep South Center for Environmental Justice and the United Steelworkers union. Contaminated sediment, soil, grass and other tainted items will be removed from yards, streets and sidewalks under the program.

BOUQUET Parkway Partners is leading an effort to replant hundreds of trees across New Orleans by the summer as part of the Urban Tree Project. The nonprofit group has joined with students and staff at Xavier University as well as volunteers from several community organizations to launch the replanting initiative. The city lost nearly 40,000 trees on public spaces during and after Hurricane Katrina. Xavier students and staff planted 12 trees around the university on March 18.

BOUQUET Andrew Jackson High cheerleaders have regrouped after Hurricane Katrina destroyed their Chalmette community and school to compete in a regional cheerleading competition this past weekend. Fifteen of the teamÕs 33 members (two boys and 13 girls) practiced weekends in Harahan to prepare for the competition. The students presently are scattered at high schools across southeast Louisiana Ñ and one in Mississippi. Two years ago, the Andrew Jackson cheerleaders won the Worldwide Spirit Association championship.

BRICKBAT BRICKBAT BRICKBAT Judge Charles Elloie of Criminal District Court recently let several suspects out on free or very small bonds even though they were arrested on serious weapons charges. In one case last week, Elloie released without any bond a man caught with six ounces of cocaine, two assault rifles (one with a 60-round clip), a Tec-9 with a silencer, four pistols and $189,000 in cash. Elloie released the man based on a phone call. He later said he didnÕt know about the guns or cash Ñ yet he released the suspect without scheduling a hearing.

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