Week in Review, Aug. 3-7: No Safety Net

Virus Outbreak Evictions
Natasha Blunt poses for a portrait in New Orleans, Tuesday, Feb. 11, 2020. Blunt owes thousands of dollars in back rent after she lost her banquet porter job. (AP Photo/Dorthy Ray)

NEW ORLEANS – Now that the federal government’s ban on certain evictions and the $600 weekly boost to Louisiana unemployment benefits have both expired, concerns are mounting that many families are facing immediate financial peril. Housing advocates nationwide predict a sharp rise in evictions. Here in New Orleans, a program to help families in crisis has already been depleted of funds, so Mayor LaToya Cantrell is asking the community to make donations to help those facing imminent eviction. And all eyes are on Washington, D.C., where officials have been debating a new round of federal aid all week. …

Restrictions Extended to Aug. 28

Gov. John Bel Edwards announced plans to keep current coronavirus restrictions in place until Aug. 28. A Baton Rouge judge, meanwhile, sided with Edwards in a lawsuit filed by Jefferson Parish business owners seeking to overturn his executive order requiring masks, limiting crowd sizes and closing bars.

Back to School

While Orleans Parish schools will begin the school year with remote learning, Jefferson Parish schools plans to begin with in-person instruction. The school system teamed with Ochsner Hospital for Children to plan safety protocols. Several JP teachers have reportedly tested positive for COVID-19 a few days before school is set to begin.

Assessing the Assessor

It’s “open rolls” season at the Orleans Parish Assessor’s office, so now’s the time for property owners to schedule an appointment if they want to dispute their home’s assessed value. The last day to do so is Aug. 17. The Bureau of Governmental Research, meanwhile, issued a report citing several ways it believes Assessor Erroll Williams can improve the operation of his office. Biz talked about the report with BGR’s Stephen Stuart and Williams.

Big Freedia’s Cookout

With the live music industry essentially out of commission for the foreseeable future, New Orleans acts have had to pivot to other endeavors. In the case of bounce rap icon Big Freedia, that means hosting a weekly live cooking demonstration in City Park’s Botanical Gardens. The event is broadcast to an average of 150,000 fans via social media.

Categories: A Week In Review, Today’s Business News