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Sitting in front of the State Capitol Building a flamingo float hood ornament awaits the start of the Spanish Town Mardi Gras parade Saturday Feb. 10, 2018, in Baton Rouge, La.

Today in The Rundown: Welcome to a special Mardi Gras edition of The Rundown, featuring updates on Gov. John Bel Edwards' trip to DC to talk infrastructure; ongoing state budget negotiations and everything else you need to know in Louisiana politics today.

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Days until the special session starts: 6

Days until the special session must end: 22

Days until the 2018 regular legislative session begins: 27

The News

Transportation: Gov. John Bel Edwards was among eight governors, and a few dozen or so state legislators and mayors, who met with President Donald Trump on Monday to talk infrastructure priorities.

ICYMI: This time next week, the Louisiana Legislature will be in a special session. Here are the details:

Higher ed: Three cash-strapped historically black universities in New Orleans will see roughly $330 million in post-Katrina debt they owe to the federal government wiped away thanks to a bipartisan congressional budget deal that President Donald Trump signed last week.

LaDemos: The state Democratic Party will not have its largest annual fundraiser in New Orleans during hurricane season this year, after back-to-back years of weather-forced rescheduling.

Fund sweeps: Now that a judge has ruled the Louisiana Legislature shouldn’t have taken dollars from dedicated funds to help balance the budget, state regulators want the money back.

Medicaid: Louisiana is moving toward becoming one of the nest states to require some Medicaid recipients to work to keep their health care benefits.

Louisiana Checkbook: The push for an Ohio Checkbook-like budget transparency website in Louisiana continues to grow.

Coastal restoration: Federal funding for Louisiana's coastal restoration efforts was spared from cuts in the Trump administration's budget proposal, despite calls for deep cuts to other domestic programs.

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