The Baptist Community Ministries

has awarded a $300,000 grant to the United Way of Greater New Orleans to create three Chairs of Excellence. The grant, which includes the potential for future funding of up to $3 million over 10 years, is intended to support three key United Way positions: the president, senior vice president of community resources, and senior vice president of the Futures Campaign.

Krispy Kreme Doughnuts

again held its "beads-for-doughnuts" fundraiser for St. Michael's Special School and the ARC of Greater New Orleans. The Metairie store last week offered a dozen hot doughnuts in exchange for a plastic bag filled with Carnival beads. The beads are to be sorted, packaged and resold by students and adults involved with the organizations.

Jerry Rome,

a former St. Charles Parish assistant district attorney, admitted accepting more than $3,000 over a five-year period in exchange for dismissing traffic tickets. Rome, who resigned last summer after serving as assistant district attorney for about nine years, pleaded guilty recently to one count of malfeasance in office.

La Grande Boucherie organizers

dampened an otherwise excellent festival in St. Martinville recently by lacking one fundamental element: restrooms for the disabled. Wheelchair users complained that the only handicapped-accessible bathroom in Magnolia Park was locked the day of the event. The Jaycees, who organize the festival, acknowledged the oversight violated the Americans with Disabilities Act and pledged to fix the problem in the future.