East Baton Rouge parish

East Baton Rouge Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome talks to us about her first three months in office and her vision for the state's largest parish. She says flood recovery is still the first thing on the minds of many of the people she encounters at community meetings.


In September 2016, the Department of Housing and Urban Development awarded East Baton Rouge Parish an $11 million grant to assist with flood recovery. Thursday night, Mayor Sharon West Broome's office proposed a new plan on how to spend it. Wallis Watkins reports.

Heroin Deaths Set New Record in East Baton Rouge

Dec 21, 2015
Louisiana State Coroners Association

The number of heroin-related deaths in East Baton Rouge Parish set a new record in 2015.

"In 2012, my office worked 5 deaths that were related to heroin overdoses," says Dr. Beau Clark, coroner for East Baton Rouge. "In 2013, that number jumped to 35."

So far this year, 38 people have died.


Gwen Hamilton
Don Kadair

Gwen Hamilton was involved in forming the East Baton Rouge Redevelopment Authority. She was recently called back in as its interim CEO.

She talks a lot about “transformative change” — the sort of change you can’t help but notice.


East Baton Rouge Parish District Attorney Hillar Moore joins the show to discuss Change for the Better, the BRAVE program, and what is expected of EBR in 2014.


Infill Key To EBR Parish Development

Nov 26, 2012
WRKF

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.


Ninth District Metro Councilman Joel Boe’  has issued a press release saying he supports the idea of consolidating law enforcement in Baton Rouge.

Crime is Walker's Mantra

Nov 1, 2012
Mayor Pro Tem and Republican candidate for mayor-president of East Baton Rouge Parish Mike Walker in the WRKF studio.
WRKF/Amy Jeffries

Mike Walker is East Baton Rouge Mayor-President Kip Holden's most formidable opponent in his run for reelection to a third term.

Walker, who is the current Mayor Pro Tem and a 12-year veteran of the Metro Council, has the backing of the Louisiana Republican Party.

Crime has been the major focus of Walker's campaign, and that's where he started his conversation with WRKF's Amy Jeffries.


Mayoral candidate Gordon Mese in the WRKF studio.
WRKF/Amy Jeffries

Kip Holden is running for a third term as mayor-president of East Baton Rouge Parish. Among Holden's challengers is small businessman Gordon Mese. Mese is hoping to win a mandate to rewrite and enforce the Unified Development Code, which sets the rules for land use in the city parish.

In the first in a series of conversations with the mayoral candidates, Mese tells WRKF's Amy Jeffries the code is the key to everything that ails Baton Rouge... starting with taxes.


Big Charter School Push Coming to Baton Rouge

Apr 26, 2012

The Recovery School District is announcing plans for an "Achievement Zone" in north Baton Rouge where the schools have been failing for decades.

As part of that effort, New Schools for Baton Rouge will be facilitating the development of charter schools.

Before moving upriver to launch the new non-profit, Chris Meyer worked for the RSD in New Orleans, identifying which schools to turn over to charter operators there.

As he told WRKF's Amy Jeffries, Meyer is out to prove that you don't need a hurricane to make radical changes to the way schools work.


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