Mitchell J. Silver opened the Louisiana Smart Growth Summit last night with constructive criticism of the capital city and its leaders. Silver serves in the Department of City Planning in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Vice President of the East Baton Rouge Redevelopment Authority Mark Goodson is part of panel discussion at the Smart Growth summit downtown Tuesday that will delve into the issue of redeveloping neglected and abandoned properties.
The Redevelopment Authority says in 2009, East Baton Rouge Parish had some 6,500 adjudicated parcels of land. That’s somewhere between 2 and 3 percent of all the parcels in the parish. The Authority is currently conducting a study in tandem with the Center for Community Progress to bring that information up-to-date. The numbers, however, are projected to be similar.
Goodson says Baton Rouge should take a more robust approach to code enforcement to reduce blight like Atlanta, Portland, and even New Orleans already have.
Louisiana homeowners, renters and business owners who sustained damage after Hurricane Isaac have only three days left to register with FEMA for disaster assistance. Thursday is also the day the state’s two remaining Disaster Recovery Centers will close.
The state Public Service Commission reported Monday that about 131,000 homes and businesses were still without electricity. That's about 6-percent of customers state-wide.
After Isaac came ashore six days ago, more than 900,000 were without power.
Entergy, the state's largest electricity provider, was able to make significant progress restoring power over the weekend thanks to, in part, new technology that pin-points damage in specific lines.
But as Entergy spokeswoman Sheila Pounders told WRKF's Ashley Westerman, the speed of restoration is still about the same as it was after Katrina, Gustav and Rita. And that, at this point, the level of restoration varies from place to place.