Wandering Eye: Inside city schools' budget woes, making energy out of chicken shit, and more

Erica Green's piece in yesterday's Baltimore Sun, summarizing her analysis of Baltimore City Public Schools' compensation to educators, revealed a system that last year paid out $46 million in bonuses, overtime pay, and leave, even as it ran up a $72 million deficit. School-board president Shanaysha Sauls dubbed the benefits pay "staggering." While union leaders defended the pay practices, they also signaled willingness to work on solving the system's financial problems. (Van Smith)


This never happens. Here in the Sheveport Times is A. M. "Marty" Stroud, III, a former prosecutor, apologizing to the man he helped put on death row 31 years ago. "This is the first, and probably will be the last, time that I have publicly voiced an opinion on any of your editorials," he writes in the March 8 piece, which includes a video. He goes on to say that Glenn Ford, the man he convicted of murder in 1984, who was released in 2014 after being exonerated by new evidence, "should be completely compensated to every extent possible because of the flaws of a system that effectively destroyed his life. The audacity of the state's effort to deny Mr. Ford any compensation for the horrors he suffered in the name of Louisiana justice is appalling." Stroud then tells his side of the story in a way few prosecutors have ever done. Read it. (Edward Ericson Jr.)


One of the biggest problems for the Chesapeake Bay is the amount of runoff that comes from all the chicken shit created on farms in the Eastern Shore. Now, a New Hampshire company wants to convert all that manure into energy, according to The Sun. This comes shortly after Gov. Larry Hogan and leading Democrats reached a compromise on regulating the manure from farms. So how do you make chicken salad—er, energy out of chicken shit? "The plant would use bacteria to extract methane-rich bio-gas for industrial use. The residue would be processed so that the bay-fouling nutrients in chicken waste could be separated and used in a more environmentally friendly manner. The nitrogen could be sold back to farmers as liquid fertilizer, which crops need every year, while the problematic phosphorus that's built up in Shore soils could be shipped elsewhere and sold as peat moss." (Brandon Weigel)

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