Jun 4, 2013 4:52 AM by AP
The Justice Department says New Orleans officials are exaggerating the potential costs the city will incur if a federal appeals court doesn't continue to block implementation of a jail reform agreement that the city now wants out of.
The department's contention came in papers filed Monday at the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.
The city maintains it cannot afford to implement the millions of dollars worth of changes called for in the police agreement while also funding a separate agreement Sheriff Marlin Gusman reached on reforms at the New Orleans jail.
Meanwhile, a federal district judge may be close to a decision on whether to approve that jail agreement. Judge Lance Africk gave lawyers a Wednesday morning deadline to submit any typographical or grammatical changes to the jail pact.