HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius today announced the award of $1 million to Louisiana to help crack down on health insurance premium increases.  Louisiana will use this Affordable Care Act (Health Care Legislation passed in March 2010) funding to help improve the oversight of proposed health insurance premium increases, take action against insurers seeking unreasonable rate hikes, and ensure Louisianans receive value for their premium dollars.

 

Louisiana And New Orleans Politics and comedy--at its best.  It’s that time again--local political theater with an attitude.  

Agroup called Stop The Gulf Oil Disaster, intends to tell President “Obama Truth About Ongoing Oil disaster” as they meet in Panama city Florida on Sunday.  In an email press release, the group are holding an event called “Trawlin' For Hope in Panama City Beach, FL with Gulf Coast Fishermen”.   On Saturday, Obama and family travelled to the coast of the Gulf of Mexico.  The group among other issues supports stopping oil drilling and the use of dispersants.

President Obama and family members visited Panama City, Florida along the coast of the Gulf of Mexico to vacation and to promote the coast as a safe place to live and to work.  

Obama is down in the Gulf Coast to show that the beaches are safe for swimming after the April 20 BP oil spill.

While in Panama City Obama gave a speech and said that the Gulf Coast is “clean, safe, and open for business”.  Obama said the spewing oil well was capped.   The president said that he would take a swim during the weekend but he did not say where that would be.

 

Incident Commander, retired Admiral Thad Allen, after meeting with Governor Jindal and the Louisiana parish presidents effected by the BP Oil Spill held a press conference along with Regional Incident Commander, Paul Zukunft who is head of the United Area Command in New Orleans.  Allen discussed subsea monitoring, existence of oil in the Gulf of Mexico, the well head pressure tests and the relief wells.  Thad Allen said, "We need to proceed with the relief well."

Here is a transcript of that press conference:

 

Sean O'Keefe, who was seriously injured (along with his son Kevin) during the airplane crash over Alaska this week has issued this statement concerning his and the other survivors health.  The statement was issued by Louisiana Superintendent of Education, Paul Pastorek.  The crash killed Senator Ted Stevens of Alaska and others.

 

This is the statement:

Fortunately, the recovery and health of Sean, Kevin and their fellow survivors continues to be very positive. However, the O'Keefe family is grieving as the loss of Sean's colleagues and friends takes hold. The O'Keefe family continues to request prayers and support for the families of Senator Stevens and the four other individuals who lost their lives in this tragic accident.

 

Sean is making significant improvements. His medical condition has been elevated from the status of critical to serious. Despite initial reports, there was no serious trauma to Sean's pelvis. He did have a dislocated hip, which has been corrected. It does not appear that any of Sean's injuries require surgery. And we are encouraged by medical reports indicating that Sean's injuries are not life-threatening,

 

Despite suffering serious injuries that have required surgery, Kevin is also showing dramatic improvement. Even so, he is very much on the mend, and his condition has been elevated from serious to fair.

 

Sean and Laura's greatest concern continues to be for Senator Stevens and the others who did not survive the crash, and, of course, for their families and friends who are suffering this tragic loss. Therefore, at Sean and Laura's specific request, out of respect for Senator Stevens and his family, there will be no additional information or engagement with the media beyond this statement.


steve_sabludowsky01Which has been or will be worse, the BP oil spill or Hurricane Katrina?

As the country, Louisiana and New Orleans begin to revisit images and memories of Katrina because the 5th anniversary is approaching this August 29, and as the gush of the oil from the BP oil spill well might soon be a thing of the past, perhaps it is time to wonder—which has been worse and which will be worse—Katrina or the BP oil spill?

As Hurricane Katrina and Rita anniversaries are approaching, so are the concerns about hurricane recoveries whether they be those storms such as Ike and Gustav. The Louisiana Legislature's Select Committee on Hurricane Recovery will hold public hearings on August 17th and 18th in the City Council Chambers, 1300 Perdido Street, New Orleans, beginning at 5 p.m. on both days.  The meetings are scheduled to end by 9 p.m.

 

President Barack Obama will travel to New Orleans on August 29 for the fifth anniversary of the day Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast.  The visit will include remarks by the President at Xavier University of Louisiana.  Members of the President’s Cabinet who have worked to speed recovery and restoration efforts will also be in the region to mark the anniversary.

There's some strange waters off the coast of Louisiana.  According to the National Wildlife Federation... discolorations in chandeleur sound.  A Huge Alga Bloom?

 

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