News for Monday 121018
Compiled By Dave Graichen
Fire officials are drying to determine the cause of a deadly fire yesterday morning just north of Campti in Natchitoches Parish. The NPSO has confirmed two fatalities, also four injuries. The Louisiana State Fire Marshal's Office is also involved in the investigation.
Pineville voters approved all five propositions on the ballot relating to the city’s alcohol regulations, four of which expanded allowable alcohol sales. Previously, only restaurants were able to sell alcohol in Pineville. That option was again approved Saturday, along with propositions that will allow stores to sell packaged alcohol and businesses like bars to serve alcohol. All five propositions received at least 62 percent of the vote in elections that saw turnout of about 22 percent.
Louisiana voters decide to keep Republican Kyle Ardoin as Secretary of State. Ardoin defeated Democrat Gwen Collins-Greenup in Saturday’s special election. Ardoin received 59-percent of the vote in a low voter turnout election. The 51-year-old Ville Platte native has served as interim Secretary of State since Tom Schedler resigned in May amid a sexual harassment scandal.
Shreveport has a new mayor. 33-year-old West Point graduate, Adrian Perkins, easily defeated Mayor Ollie Tyler, who was seeking a second term. Perkins received 64-percent of the vote. Perkins is a war veteran and attorney with no previous political experience. His promise of a better Shreveport led to a landslide victory over the incumbent…
US Representative and now candidate for governor, Republican Ralph Abraham, says Governor John Bel Edwards has been relentless in his effort to raise taxes. But Eric Holl, spokesperson for the 2019 Democratic Coordinator Campaign team, says Abraham’s proposal for over a billion dollars in across the board cuts would have devastated the state. Abraham also says Louisiana is heading in the wrong direction. But Holl disagrees, based on what’s happen during the first three years of the Edwards administration.
A useful app you may want to download to your smart device is available now, and the developer behind the app is an LSU grad from Walker, Louisiana. The app is called Find a Spot and it links you with a friend to find the best possible geographical meetup place in the middle of your two locations. App developer Derrick Denicola says the idea came to him while sitting in traffic. Denicola says it took about seven years to produce the app after first coming up with the idea. The 2007 LSU grad says it’s simple to use, even his parents can figure it out, which was his goal.
St. Tammany Parish has been awarded a $25 million BUILD grant to widen I-12. The widening is needed due to unsafe conditions and bottlenecks along a 3.8 mile stretch and comes after four fatalities over Memorial Day weekend this year. St. Tammany Parish President Pat Brister calls the quick turnaround on locking in the money to move forward with construction a huge success.
For the first time in franchise history, the Saints are back-to-back division champions. New Orleans clinched the NFC South crown on Sunday with a come from behind 28-14 win over Tampa Bay. New Orleans trailed 14-3 in the third quarter, but scored 25 unanswered points to avenge an earlier loss to the Buccaneers.
News for Friday 120718
Compiled by Dave Graichen
There’s rain moving in across the state today that could total anywhere from 2 to 5 inches. The heaviest amounts are expected in the northwest portion of the state. State Climatologist Barry Keim says once this front moves through, the state should see cool air move in next week.
5th district Congressman Ralph Abraham made it official yesterday that he is joining the race for Governor. Abraham, a conservative Republican, says he’s been concerned about the direction the state is moving since Democratic Governor John Bel Edwards took over in 2015, the same year he was elected to Congress. He joins Baton Rouge businessman Eddie Rispone as the only two Republicans to have officially joined the race. However, Pollster Bernie Pinsonat says be on the lookout for a few more candidates to rise to the challenge. Governor Edwards responded to the announcement by releasing a statement saying he welcomes the debate.
5 different propositions dealing with Pineville's regulations on selling alcohol will be on the local ballot Saturday, along with five tax propositions. Currently, only restaurants are able to sell alcohol in Pineville, but that could change, depending on Saturday's election. The propositions range from no alcohol sales of any kind in the city to expanding alcohol sales into other types of businesses, such as retail stores and bars.
Congress punted yet again on overhauling the National Flood Insurance Program, extending the program for two more weeks as part of a broader stop-gap funding deal. The NFIP has lurched along for more than a year on a series of short-term extensions as lawmakers have deadlocked and then put off overhauling the federally run program, which underwrites most flood coverage in the U.S.
Former President of the Shaw Group Jim Bernhard says he is ready to back the loan, if need be, to build a new bridge across the Mississippi River. Bernhard says his company is willing to underwrite the bonds for the project. Bernhard says there is much infrastructure work that needs to be done prior to the bridge being built.
75 year old Former Governor Kathleen Blanco, who was diagnosed with cancer last year, told a Council for A Better Louisiana luncheon Wednesday that her cancer has spread to other parts of her body and that while she remains optimistic, she understands there’s “no escape. Blanco said that she is at peace with the disease and that she realizes the monster is not far down the road.”
After spending $750 million to construct an oil pipeline that’s scheduled to open at the end of the month, the builders must spend another $450 to settle claims it didn’t properly seize a swath of undeveloped land in St. Martin Parish. In a ruling released Thursday, state judge Keith Comeaux said those building the Bayou Bridge Pipeline had a right to seize the land under eminent domain, but he refused to forgive their trespassing against three property owners. He ordered the pipeline’s owners to pay them $150 each. The judge then said the company was clear to seize the land.
It’s the tenth year of the George Rodrigue Foundation art scholarship contest is seeking submissions. Spokesperson Christine Dunaway says it’s been an important program for art students in it’s over decade of existence. The school with the top number of submissions will win a 1,000 dollar art kit.
The security website SafeWise has put together it’s list of the twenty safest cities in the state for 2018. Safety and Security analyst for the site Rebecca Edwards says Louisiana has struggled to keep it’s statewide crime rate down as the average number of violent crimes per 1000 citizens was 8.6, nearly double the national average. Edwards says among the safest cities are De Ridder, Harahan, Scott, and topping the list was the St. Mary Parish city of Patterson.
Advanced cancer patients are a lot better off receiving palliative care, where treating symptoms is the focus, than traditional treatments, according to a new study by Tulane. Graduate student Laura Perry says the research, led by Tulane Assistant Professor Michael Hoerger, could inspire a new norm for patients with severe prognoses .2,092 patients were observed, and 56 percent of those who received palliative treatment survived past a year, compared to 42 percent who got typical treatments.
A win Sunday over Tampa Bay and the Saints clinch a second consecutive NFC South title. The Bucs beat New Orleans in the season opener and Quarterback Drew Brees says Tampa Bay’s defense has been playing well lately. Last time out the Saints had their 10-game winning streak snapped with a Thursday night loss in Dallas. Brees says it’s a defeat they can learn from.
News for Thursday 120618
Compiled By Dave Graichen
Pineville PD report a multi-vehicle accident occurred on HWY 165 in the Kingsville area yesterday afternoon involving a Rapides Parish school bus, an 18-wheeler and a van. According to Pineville Police, no children were inside of the school bus at the time of the crash. Police report there was one person in the van who had to be extricated. The condition of the person is unknown. The bus driver and the driver of the 18-wheeler have non-threatening injuries.
Natchitoches Parish Sheriff Deputies say a man wanted for shooting his father in the hip, fatally shot himself during a standoff with authorities near Chopin Wednesday morning. Deputies began a manhunt for Joseph Dauzat Tuesday night after he reportedly shot his dad.
An appellate court decision Wednesday will move an armed robbery trial back to the 9th Judicial District Court division now presided over by new Judge Chris Hazel. Defense attorney Chad Guillot had filed an emergency writ to the 3rd Circuit Court of Appeal Monday after Judge Greg Beard denied a motion that sought to move the trial of Anthony Strong back to Hazel's Division B. Jury selection had started on Tuesday but, after the 3rd Circuit's decision to consider Guillot's writ, that was put on hold.
Due to the less than pleasant weather forecasted for the weekend, several towns have decided to reschedule their Christmas parades… The City of Pineville’s parade has been moved from this Saturday to next Monday evening at 7, Town of Ball moved their parade to Saturday, December 15 at 2 p.m., while the town of Boyce moved theirs to Sunday the 16th at 3p.
It didn’t take long for a candidate to come forward to fill the District 26 State House seat vacated by Alexandria’s new mayor Jeff Hall. Rapides Parish School Board Member Sandra Franklin announced on Wednesday she will run for the seat as a Democrat.. Another candidate believed to be running is Alexandria City Councilman Ed Larvadain. Though not officially announced, he’s holding a press conference on Friday.. In the District 27 seat vacated by Chris Hazel, Pineville attorney Mike Johnson announced, back in June, he will run as a Republican.
With the holiday season in effect, the state has seen an uptick in flu cases. This news comes after a horrible flu season last year, with triple the number of hospitalizations and deaths than normal. Flu Bug expert for Louisiana Department of Health Frank Welch says getting the flu shot doesn’t guarantee someone won’t get the flu, but if they do get the flu after getting the flu shot, it won’t be so severe.
A Report from Hunger Free America says Louisiana has the third highest rate of food insecure children in the nation. About 25 percent of kids in the state live in households where their parents do not make enough money, and CEO Joel Berg says that doesn’t mean the state is of third world status, but it does mean many families are having to make tough choices between absolute necessities despite living in such a wealthy country.
The Avondale Scout Reservation in East Feliciana Parish has been closed after two boy scouts were hospitalized with histoplasmosis. It’s a flu-like illness that comes from soil contaminated with bat or bird droppings. State Epidemiologist Raoult Ratard says histoplasmois is a fungus and you can sick after breathing in the spores from the fungus. At least 15 campers were reportedly exposed to histoplasmosis. Ratard says symptoms can develop three to 17 days after exposure, but usually infected individuals recover quickly…
Saints and Pelicans owner Gayle Benson has provided a gift to some 400 WalMart shoppers in New Orleans. Mrs Benson paid off nearly 100-thousand dollars in gifts that were on layaway for the holiday season, which came as a complete shock to those consumers who learned of the nice gesture. The Saints owner will be looking for more holiday cheer this weekend as the Black and Gold try to get even with the Bucs this Sunday.
A $25 million dollar bond has been set for a Ponchatoula man accused of possession of child pornography. The FBI New Orleans Child Exploitation Task Force, which includes State Police, arrested 59-year-old Edd Scafidel Jr. Senior Trooper Melissa Matey says authorities received the information on the suspect last month.
LSU Athletic Director Joe Alleva told Alexandria’s 94.6 ESPN yesterday that despite the great year for the Tigers, it’s not time to talk about a contract extension for Coach Ed Orgeron. Tiger Rag Editor James Moran says it’s Alleva’s style to wait after the final game is played. Orgeron is currently getting paid 3.5 million dollars a year.
McNeese State has apparently found a new head football coach. Nothing official from the school but there’s a report the Cowboys have hired South Florida offensive coordinator Sterlin Gilbert. Gilbert is also a former offensive coordinator at Texas and played high school football in the Lone Star state.
The Monroe News-Star reports Grambling State and its athletics director Paul Bryant have decided to go their separate ways. Bryant will leave the school at the end of the month and President Rick Gallot says the vice president for student affairs, David Ponton, will take over as A-D at the first of the year. Gallot says Bryant wanted to explore other opportunities.
The high school state football championships kick-off today at the Superdome, as nine teams will be crowned champions before the prep classic concludes on Saturday night.
News for Wednesday 120518
Compiled by Dave Graichen
Today is a national day of mourning in honor of the passing of George HW Bush, the 41st President who served from 89-93. Bush only served one term after losing his re-election bid to then Arkansas Governor Bill Clinton in 92, in what turned out to be a heated race. Through all that though, the two presidents remained close personal friends, a friendship that lasted until the passing of Bush last week. President Bush helmed the country through a monumental shift in world power, including the dismantling of the Berlin wall and the final days of the former Soviet Union.
The Alexandria Fire Department is investigating an early morning blaze Tuesday involving three homes in the 200 block of 12th Street. Officials say the fire started at one home and spread to two more. Five people were able to escape the blaze.
An Alexandria man accused of rape and sexual battery will be examined by a sanity commission after his attorney contended he doesn't understand the charges against him. 19 year old Jalen Carter was indicted by a Rapides Parish grand jury in September on two counts of first-degree rape, two counts of sexual battery and two counts of oral sexual battery, charges he pled not guilty to. Police say the victims were both under the age of 13.
We need more companies like this in Central Louisiana.. Monday night RoyOMartin presented the Alan Parish Police jury with check for $3.25 million Dollars. This coming after the ten-year tax exemption given to the Martco plant comes to an end. RoyOMartin thank Allen Parish and specific communities that have spent the past ten years helping make Martco the success that is today. Due to this tax exemption, RoyOMartin was able to invest $234 million to build the plant, providing 174 direct jobs, 105 of which are held by Allen Parish residents, along with over 600 indirect jobs.
St. Landry Parish Sheriffs have arrested a substitute teacher for allegedly having sex with two students off campus. 38-year-old Tara Richard is facing four counts of Felony Carnal Knowledge, and one count of Oral Sexual Battery in connection with what authorities say were her actions involving a 15 and 16 year old who attended a local school. Richard has allegedly admitted to having sex with the two over the summer.
The 2019 Governor’s race took a turn that blindsided many when Senator John Kennedy announced he would not be challenging Governor Edwards. Republicans are in a scramble to find a candidate with less than a year until the election. Political consultant Roy Fletcher says there’s a reason why the GOP didn’t have a Plan B candidate. It was pretty much a given that Kennedy would run. While several names have been discussed including Congressman Ralph Abraham, Attorney General Jeff Landry, State Treasurer John Schroder, and Senator Sharon Hewitt of Slidell, Fletcher says they all face a similar obstacle, lack of name recognition.
Governor John Bel Edwards hopes U.S. Senator John Kennedy’s decision to stay out of the 2019 governor’s race and remain in DC will give the Senator a new-found focus on his federal responsibilities, instead of using his time to verbally spar with state leaders.
Kennedy released a statement yesterday saying many of the state’s issues were related to a “top down institution.” and said he’s confident another Republican will defeat Edwards.
A Baton Rouge woman told Grant Parish Sheriff's deputies she was selling drugs to get Christmas money after she allegedly dropped a bag of meth inside a business. The GPSO reports 34 year old Claire Brewton admitted there was meth in the bag and that it was hers. Brewton was booked into the parish jail.
Good news for LSU fans looking to attend the Fiesta Bowl: tickets will likely be available through the school for at least the next week for the game against undefeated UCF in Glendale, Arizona. LSU Ticket Manager Brian Broussard says it’s an attractive vacation spot, and he hopes it will draw in Purple and Gold from around the country.
The FCC is encouraging TV viewers who use an antenna to watch television to rescan their TV as many stations are moving frequencies in an effort to free up airwaves for high speed internet and mobile broadband. Chair of the FCC Incentive Auction Task Force Jean Kiddoo (ki’doo) says if you subscribe to TV, through Cable or Satellite, you don’t have to worry about the changes. The changes will have an effect in Lafayette, Monroe, Alexandria, and Lake Charles. Some stations have already made the switch, so you may be missing them, if a rescan hasn’t been performed recently.
Four West Baton Rouge sheriff deputies are charged with malfeasance after an investigation into multiple inmate escapes. Major Dale Simoneaux says during their probe they learned a 23 year old deputy had sex with an inmate, while another deputy took a bribe to look the other way. Simoneaux says they discovered one trustee escaped while taking out the trash and another escaped by simply scaling the fence at the end of the night.
A state judge sets a January 28th date on where he’ll decide whether Matthew Naquin should turn over his personal passcode to his cell phone. The former LSU student is accused of negligent homicide in the 2017 alcohol-related hazing death Max Gruver.
The State Fire Marshal’s Office is mourning the loss of one of it’s explosive ordinance detection K-9 officers. The 10 year old black lab, named Barry, had been with the agency since 2012. Barry came to the State Fire Marshal from the US Marine Corp where he served two tours of duty overseas. Barry died following surgical complications to remove a large mass in his stomach.
Former Seahawk and Saints cornerback Brandon Browner was sentenced to eight years in prison Tuesday on an attempted murder charge. Browner plead no contest after prosecutors say he threatened to kill his ex-girlfriend last July when he attempted to smothered her with a carpet.
News for Tuesday 120418
Compiled by Dave Graichen
Canadian air is back in Louisiana this morning, causing temperatures to plummet after an unusually warm streak of weather to start off the month of December. State Climatologist Barry Keim says north Louisiana is suffering near freezing temperatures, while the south sits around the 40s. And it gets even colder tomorrow.
Jeff Hall was sworn in as the new mayor of Alexandria yesterday. Hall replaces Jacques Roy, who opted not to run for re-election after 12 years. Hall is a graduate of Grambling State University and worked at Cleco for 32 years as a Senior V-P and then served as an accountant for the City of Alexandria.
Also yesterday, Chris Hazel was sworn in a Judge. Hazel was a longtime state representative, as well as a former Marine and assistant district attorney. He won the election for 9th Judicial District Court, Division B last month. He took the position opened by Retired Judge Tom Yeager, who actually came to swear Hazel in.
Senator John Kennedy says after much consideration, he will not be running for governor, ending months of speculation that he would challenge Governor John Bel Edwards in the 2019 contest. ULM Political Science Professor Joshua Stockley says it’s a shock announcement considering his not-so-subtle public interest in the position. Other names are being discussed for the ballot, including State Treasurer John Schroder who says the announcement took him by surprise. 5th Dist. Congressman Ralph Abraham says he will make a decision soon on whether or not he’ll run.
Governor John Bel Edwards responded to Senator Kennedy’s decision yesterday by saying Kennedy’s flirtation with running for governor was to put the spotlight on himself. Edwards says he now hopes Kennedy and the entire Congressional delegation can work with him to get things done for the hard working families in Louisiana.
Hanna Nicole Barker, the mother accused in the burning death of her 6-month-old boy in Natchitoches, was sentenced to five years in prison Monday after her probation on 2016 drug charges was revoked. Barker also was arraigned on a charge of first-degree murder, after her indictment by a Natchitoches Parish grand jury. She pleaded not guilty, and her trial date was set for Jan. 13, 2020.
The St. Landry Sheriff’s office says a local doctor is in critical condition after he was shot during a home invasion early Monday morning. Sheriff Bobby Guidroz his detectives are hoping to interview Doctor John Vallain to find out what happened.
A pretrial scheduled for Monday for Roger Boggs, the CEO of Revolution Aluminum who was supposed to bring a $1.5 billion aluminum plant to Pineville back in 2015, has been continued until February 20. Boggs was indicted on a bank fraud charge back in April. A charge he pled not guilty to.
After law enforcement made the discovery of more than a dozen horses that all appeared to be emaciated on her property in Lockport, the Lafourche Humane Society President, Pamela George and fellow property owner John Gautreaux, have been arrested and charged with animal cruelty. George and Gautreaux, have been booked into the Lafourche Parish Detention Center on a $2000 bond each.
The Louisiana Department of Health has released six recommendations of an expert panel on steps to fight the opioid epidemic, much of which Assistant State Health Officer for LDH Dr. Joseph Kanter says is common sense. Kanter says the state has a long way to go in expanding access to effective treatment and the use of other means of treating chronic pain. Kanter says behind every one of the recommendations are a series of measurable items that can be used to gauge the state’s progress.
Pollster Bernie Pinsonat has this Saturday’s Secretary of State’s election at 43-40 for Republican Kyle Ardoin of Democrat Gwen Collins-Greenup, with 17 percent still undecided. The close numbers may be a bit surprising for a race most assume Ardoin will win handily, but Pinsonat says a lot of it has to do with voters who are still up in the air. He expects the numbers to start tipping notably in Ardoin’s favor as we get closer to voting day, and the Interim Secretary of State’s substantial cash advantage increases.
LSU star cornerback Greedy Williams will not play in the Tigers bowl game against UCF as he’s declared for the NFL draft. Williams is considered to be a top five pick and Tiger Rag Editor James Moran says not playing in a bowl game, is a growing trend for future first round picks. Linebacker Devin White announced Monday he will play in LSU’s bowl game.
News for Monday 120318
Compiled by Dave Graichen
Senator John Kennedy says he will not run for governor, ending months of speculation that he would challenge Governor John Bel Edwards in the 2019 contest. Kennedy says after much consideration, he’s decided he can get the most done for Louisiana, and the country, in the Senate.
Jeffery Hall will be sworn in as Alexandria’s next mayor today. The Inaugural Ceremony will begin at 10:45 a.m. at the Randolph Riverfront Center where Hall will be introduced by his wife Patricia. Around noon, Hall will provide an acceptance address to the community. Following the ceremony, an Inaugural Reception will be held for invited guests.
One of the last things outgoing Mayor Jacques Roy did Friday was signed off on the confirmation of Alexandria Police Chief Jerrod King. The document signed by the mayor stated that King had successfully completed a standard probation process.
It was announced Friday night that the 41st President of the United States, George H.W. Bush had died. It was in New Orleans that his road to the White House became official when he accepted the nomination at the GOP National Convention at the Superdome in 1988. Bush was applauded for his efforts in establishing the Bush-Clinton Katrina fund, which he formed with Former President Bill Clinton that donated millions to local schools, libraries, and non-profits. Bush was preceded in death by his wife Barbara, who passed away earlier this year. George H.W. Bush was 94 years old.
New CDC data indicates drug overdose deaths rose 12% in Louisiana from 2016 to 2017. Overdose deaths have contributed to the life expectancy rate declining for three straight year in the United States, a pattern not seen in 100 years. President and CEO of Trust for America’s Health John Auerbach says this marks the first time that more than 1,000 people died in a single year from overdoses in Louisiana.
A federal judge has ordered $34.8 million in restitution from the owner of Explo Systems, a military contractor hired to demilitarize artillery charges at Camp Minden in Webster Parish, in a case stemming from a huge munitions blast in 2012 due to illegal dumping of the materials. In addition to the restitution, five people are heading to the clink with sentences between 2-5 years. US Attorney David Joseph says he’s happy with the outcome.
A 23-year-old North Shreveport woman was seriously injured from a gunshot wound she received in the back. Her two-year-old child is believed to have accidentally discharged the unsecured weapon. The investigation is ongoing.
Shreveport Police are looking for one or more people who fired gunshots at a five-year-old boy and a man and a woman who arrived at a location to sell a puppy. Authorities say the child was shot once, while the adults were shot multiple times. The gunshot wounds to the three individuals are not considered life threatening. A motive for the shooting has not been established. The puppy was not hit by gunfire.
A Koch brother’s backed conservative advocacy group has begun airing anti-gas tax ads on social media and at gas station video screens across the state ahead of next year’s legislative session that may include a push to raise the tax to pay for road projects. Americans for Prosperity State Director John Kay says gas taxes hurt everyday Louisianans most. Last year infrastructure advocates attempted to pass a 17 cent gas tax that would have raised half a billion dollars a year.
A Fort Polk interior designer and military spouse had the honor last week of joining 150 volunteers for the annual Christmas decoration of the White House. Amy Hirata was one of the seven thousand people who sent in an application to take part in the activities.
At least two Boy Scout campers who returned from a recent trip with fevers, chills and a cough have been hospitalized for exposure to a rare and unusual disease linked to bird and bat droppings found in the soil, spurring involvement from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. St. Francisville resident Emiley Bonano has been battling histoplasmosis since she traveled to Camp Avondale with her little brother’s Boy Scout troop in early November. Reports say other scouts have reported similar symptoms. However, CDC and Louisiana Health officials will not say how many.
For the first time in the 125-year history of LSU Football, the Tigers will play in the Fiesta Bowl in Glendale, Arizona on New Year’s Day and they’ll face UCF, who has won 25 in a row. Coach Ed Orgeron says his team deserved to play in a New Year’s Six Bowl game. U-C-F beat Auburn in last year’s Peach Bowl.
Louisiana Tech will face former Western Athletic Conference foe Hawaii in the Hawaii bowl on Saturday night, December 22nd. The Bulldogs will play in a bowl game for a fifth consecutive season. Coach Skip Holtz says playing a bowl game in Hawaii is an unique experience and he’s glad his team has this opportunity.
News for Friday 113018
Compiled By Dave Graichen
Alex Winter Fete’ officially kicked off last night with the Lighting of the Christmas tree and downtown lights. Mayor Jacques Roy flipped the switch for the last time. The mayor saying it was a bitter sweet experience. Alex River and Winter Fetes were a very successful accomplish of the Roy administration, something the mayor was proud to point out. Winter Fete’ continues tonight and concluding Saturday night, after a full day of activities and entertainment.
Some residents in the Carlyle area of Alexandria are counting their blessings after an 18-wheeler crashed into the back of a home in that neighborhood last night. Police say the truck ran off of I-49. The miracle is, no one was injured. No word yet about any citations for the incident.
State police report a two vehicle crash just before noon yesterday claimed the life of an 86 year old Pitkin man. Troopers say a logging truck had been involved in an accident on LA HWY 399 and was stopped in the highway. James Johnson, upon approaching the truck from behind, failed to stop and hit the back of the truck. Johnson was wearing his seat belt, but was pronounced dead at the scene.
Congress pushed back its deadline to deal with the National Flood Insurance Program by at least a week, passing yet another short-term extension of the program late Thursday. A deadline to avoid a lapse in the federal program, which underwrites most flood insurance coverage in the country and covers a half-million Louisiana homes, had been looming at midnight tonight. The short-term deal is the eighth temporary extension for the program since it first came up for periodic renewal more than a year ago.
Senator John Kennedy is delaying his announcement on whether or not he’ll run for governor until Monday, siting travel issues. The 2019 race is now less than a year away, and only one Republican, Eddie Rispone, has declared against Governor Edwards. ULM Poli Sci Professor Joshua Stockley says the Senator’s repeated delays are beginning to look like non-interest. Stockley says if Kennedy does not declare, he’s hurt the GOP cause in the race by boxing other candidates out of fundraising for the last few months.
A statewide poll of 500 Louisiana chronic voters finds that Republican US Senator John Kennedy leads Democratic incumbent Governor John Bel Edwards 49-to-45-percent in a head-to-head race for governor. The poll indicates only six-percent of voters are undecided with the election just over 10 months away. Pinsonat says Edwards remains a popular governor, 60-percent of respondents approve of his job performance. But Pollster Bernie Pinsonat says the governor is a Democrat in a Red state…
President Donald Trump’s approval is up to a clear majority of voters in Louisiana in a new poll from Bernie Pinsonat. Pinsonat says 2018 has featured a few big signature wins for causes close to the heart of white conservative voters that dominate the state’s electorate. Trump sports a 70 percent approval rating in total from white voters in Louisiana.
The candidates in the Secretary of State’s special election are seeing increases in fundraising ahead of the December 8th run off. Democrat candidate Gwen Collins-Greenup reportedly has $16,400 in her campaign account. Meanwhile, Republican Kyle Ardoin has just under $136 thousand in the bank.
Today marks the final day of the 2018 hurricane season, a season that was initially forecasted to be below average. Even though Louisiana was spared of the impact of any major weather event, other coastal areas in the US were not so lucky. Colorado State University hurricane researcher Phil Klotzbach, lead author of the forecast says they under-predicted the slightly above average season.
Senator Bill Cassidy announced yesterday Federal officials will clear the way for Louisiana to dole out recovery grants to flood victims who'd taken out Small Business Administration loans and they would do that without additional action from President Trump. Congress changed federal law in October to allow 2016 Louisiana flood victims who'd taken out the loans to tap grants from the Restore Louisiana program. But checks haven't gone out as Louisiana officials waited on guidance from the Trump administration. Cassidy say we should get that guidance sometime in December.
Tangipahoa Parish authorities say they believe the 3 pound baby boy found in the back of a Tickfaw garbage truck was likely a stillborn. Sheriff Daniel Edwards says they’re searching for the child’s mother, and have honed in on the likely dumping location after determining where the corpse was located relative to other trash in the truck that had been compacted. The child was discovered by a Waste Management worker yesterday while he was loading trash cans into his vehicles compactor.
Good news for the thousands of motorists who use the Sunshine Bridge in St. James Parish. The bridge was closed last month for repairs after a barge hit the structure, but after testing and inspections, it will be partially reopened tomorrow.
It was a tough start to the game last night for Drew Brees. Brees started the game against the Dallas Cowboys with four consecutive incomplete passes, the first time he's done that in his 18-year career. The final score, the Saints lost this one 10 to 13. They’ll play a week from Sunday at the Buccaneers.
The Pelicans at in Miami to play the heat tonight.. game time 6:30 on 94.7 ESPN.
News for Thursday 112918
Compiled by Dave Graichen
Rapides Parish Sheriffs say they walked in on a fairly horrific scene in Plainview after responding to a call about a natural death, and now three people are under arrest and facing 2nd Degree Murder, Cruelty to the Infirm, and other charges. Captain Tommy Carnline says the deputy arrived after the call, and realized something was terribly wrong at the scene of the 25-year-old special needs woman’s death. Carnline says authorities have called it one of the worst cases of negligence they’ve seen in their entire careers.
Starting Tonight and ending Saturday, downtown will be transformed into "A Magical Winter Wonderland" for Alexandria's popular Christmas festival, Alex Winter Fete’. Festival-goers can enjoy snow, ice skating, shopping, food and holiday-themed activities, plus plenty of food and shopping vendors. The Commencement ceremony and lighting up of downtown, is at 6 this evening.
It was something we don’t see very often, the Alexandria City Council making a unanimous decision. But, that was the case Tuesday when the Council unanimously decided to re-name the Riverfront Center in honor of former mayor Ned Randolph. Randolph served as mayor for 20 years, that after serving the area as a state representative and state senator. Mayor Ned passed away 2 year ago. But, his legacy goes on as his late wife Deborah Randolph continues to serve the area as President of the Central Louisiana Chamber of Commerce.
Governor Edwards is putting out a call to action for Louisiana citizens to start stocking their local food banks for the holidays, as a series of natural disasters have devastated stores just at the time when banks usually can begin stocking up for spring and summer. Edwards says he’s gravely concerned after touring the half empty Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank yesterday. Food Bank of Central Louisiana Executive Director Jayne Wright-Velez says it’s troubling that supply is running low as demand skyrockets. Food banks accept cash and food donations, but say they can use funds to purchase foods at lower prices than you would pay for them at grocery stores.
Some House Republicans are discussing legislation for the next session that would roll back the .45 percent sales tax passed in June because of a rosier than expected revenue forecast for the state. Alexandria Representative Lance Harris did not confirm that such legislation will be brought but says he has heard talk of phasing out last session’s sales tax over a few years. The .45 percent sales tax, that is set to expire in 2025, is estimated to generate 466 million annually.
120 jobs are coming to Minden in Webster Parish as a result of Catamaran Solutions plans to assume operation of a 135,000 square foot industrial fabrication center. The jobs will come with an average salary of 61-thousand dollars a year. Catamaran plans on anticipating its Louisiana workforce to as many as 500 employees statewide over time.
The Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff’s Criminal Investigations Unit is investigating the discovery of a deceased infant in the back of a waste management truck. A waste management worker discovered the body as he was performing his regular. The infant was pronounced dead at the scene.
A recent survey found that 1 in 3 Americans suffers from a “festive burnout” due to the holidays being a stressful time. Even though it’s supposed to be the most wonderful time of the year, LSU Health New Orleans clinical psychologist Dr. Michelle Moore says for those already dealing with festival burnout, it may be time to reconsider your holiday activities.
Prosecutors are attempting to obtain the cell phone passcode of Matthew Naquin, a former LSU student charged with negligent homicide in the Max Gruver case. But Loyola University Law Professor Dane Ciolino says the Fifth Amendment prohibits Naquin from being obligated to give a testimony revealing his cellular passcode
If you’ve purchased a fresh Christmas tree yet this year, you’ve probably noticed they cost a little more than last year. Blake Huval, the owner of Huval’s Tree Hut in Central, says during the Great Recession farmers scaled back on planting new trees, so a decade later the supply is not enough to keep up with demand. Huval says if you’re look to save a few bucks, look for trees that may have a hole or two on one side and have that side face the corner of a room.
WBRZ-TV is reporting Dedrick Lee, who is the son of convicted south Louisiana serial killer Derrick Todd Lee, has been charged with negligent homicide, in the fatal shooting death of a 16-year-old. The East Feliciana High School student was killed in a home in Clinton. Dedrick Lee has posted bond and you may remember his dad died in prison.
LSU is number 10 in the latest College Football playoff rankings which puts them in position to play in either the Fiesta or Peach Bowl. Jerry Palm does bowl projections for CBS Sports says LSU could be knocked out of contention for a New Year’s Six Bowl if, Northwestern beats Ohio State in the Big 10 championship or if Pittsburgh upsets Clemson in the ACC title game.
Palm has Louisiana Tech going to the New Orleans Bowl to face the winner of Saturday’s Sun Belt Championship game between the Cajuns and Appalachian State. But there’s another report showing Louisiana Tech heading to the Hawaii Bowl to face old WAC rival Hawaii.
The loser of the Sun Belt Game goes to the Cure Bowl in Orlando.
The Saints defense will face one of the top running backs in the NFL tonight. Ezekiel Elliot leads the NFL with 1,074 rushing yards and averages nearly five yards a carry for the Cowboys. Kick-off is this evening s at 7:20 from AT-and-T Stadium.
Saints Hall of Fame linebacker Rickey Jackson reportedly underwent successful brain surgery. Details on why the surgery was needed have not been released. Jackson was a member of the famed Dome Patrol and inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2010.
News for Wednesday 112818
Compiled by Dave Graichen
Pineville High School was evacuated for a short period of time yesterday, after what school officials called an “electrical malfunction” in the Heating and A/C unit in one classroom. Parents were notified and students returned to classes after an short period of time.
Two proposed ordinances on the Alexandria City Council agenda that sparked controversy on social media have been removed just hours before they were to be voted on yesterday. The first ordinance would have broadened the definition of retired unclassified employees specifically for health insurance plans. Essentially, the change would have allowed employees, who meet certain criteria and are no longer employed with the city, to stay on the city’s health insurance plan with no employer contributions. That means former employees would have to pay 100 percent of the cost to stay on the health plan. A second item was also removed from the agenda. It was an ordinance that would keep current rules in place for the city’s 457 retirement plan.
Governor Edwards’ plans to fund 43 million dollars in additional projects for the year are on hold after Representative Cameron Henry put a stop to the Revenue Estimating Committee’s plans to improve the state’s revenue forecast at a Committee meeting. Henry says he disagreed with the REC’s projections that the state’s revenue situation has improved. The Edwards’ administration was hoping to use a better forecast to authorize tens of millions in additional spending for Corrections, Sheriffs, and Juvenile Justice, among other items.
Time is running out for Congress to renew the National Flood Insurance Program. Flood insurance will lapse if a sought after six month extension is not passed by Friday. Senator John Kennedy says they’re working towards an extension, but there’s some lawmakers who are trying to kill the program, permanently. Kennedy says the opposition is not partisan, but geographical, comprised of leaders from non-flood-prone states.
Former Congressional candidate and Democrat Justin DeWitt was fired less than two days after his failed attempt to unseat Garret Graves in Louisiana’s 6th District. DeWitt worked as a surveyor for Baton Rouge based SJB Group, which a report says is owned by Republican Wilfred Barry. DeWitt says after receiving a performance raise in July, and a performance bonus in October, the decision came as a shock. The Democrat says he’s approached the DA about criminal charges.
Early voting for the Secretary of State’s election run-off set for December 8th is off to a slow start. JMC Analytics Pollster John Couvillon says the 31,000 early votes in the first two days are likely due to the fact that most folks aren’t even aware that there is an election less than two weeks away. The run-off features Republican Interim Secretary Kyle Ardoin and Democratic Minister Gwen Collins-Greenup.
The West Monroe Police Department have arrested a person of interest during the course of a suspicious death investigation. 31-year-old Shomari Clemons facing charges of mutilating, disinterring the human remains of his grandmother. Why? Authorities aren’t saying anything yet.
The Supreme Court sides with a St. Tammany landowner who argued a portion of his land was wrongfully deemed critical habitat for the dusky gopher frog, by forcing the lower courts to re-evaluate their previous decision. The landowner’s lawyer, Mark Miller says they’ll get to state their case that making the land livable for the frog would be an undue burden. Wildlife and Fisheries argues that the land, which is just across the border from where the frogs currently reside in Mississippi, will be crucial for the future survival of the species.
Louisiana sees many productions around the state for television shows and motion pictures. Now a recently released film, Green Book, is getting attention for possibly being an Oscar contender.
Saints Quarterback Drew Brees is on the cover of this week’s Sports Illustrated. The headline says its time to rethink Drew Brees and it also says please stop calling Brees an underdog. Writer Greg Bishop calls Brees one of the greatest quarterbacks, if not the greatest, who’s ever lived.
The Pelicans lost their fourth straight last night as they fell to Boston 124 to 107 Monday night. New Orleans hosts Washington tomorrow night. You can hear the game beginning at 6:30 on Alexandria’s 94.7 ESPN.
LSU Coach Ed Orgeron says some unprofessional acts occurred after the seven overtime loss to Texas A-and-M. Coach O spoke with the 94.6 ESPN Radio show Off the Bench. Video shows a credentialed member of the Aggies staff shoving Kragthorpe during what should have been a postgame hand shake. Kragthorpe has Parkinson’s Disease and a pacemaker and Orgeron says that should not have happened.
News for Tuesday 112718
Compiled by Dave Graichen
State Police report an Alexandria woman died Monday morning after her car was hit head-on by a box truck, on highway 3170 near LSUA. According to authorities 24 year old Chandler Lewis lost control of the truck, crossed the center line and hit a vehicle being driven by 24 year old Leminee Issac. Issac, who was not wearing a seatbelt was pronounced dead at the scene. Lewis, the driver of the truck suffered only minor injuries. Charges are pending against Lewis.
The man accused of raping an 82-year-old dementia patient last year at an Alexandria hospital has taken a plea that will send him to prison for up to 40 years. 28 year old Juantavies White was due to stand trial this week on a charge of first-degree rape.
An Alexandria man accused in the fatal shooting and armed robbery a man in September 2017 was found unable to stand trial on Monday. 21 year old Braylon Dozier Jr. was declared mentally unfit and a danger to himself and others by Judge Harry Randow. Randow ordered Dozier be sent to the East Louisiana Mental Health System in East Feliciana Parish until further notice. Dozier is accused of murdering Steven Allen, who was delivering pizza at the time he was shot and killed.
A former APD officer was sentenced yesterday to three years in prison. 43 year old Kenneth Thomas, who accused of dealing drugs and having sex while on duty, pled guilty to a reduced charge of abuse of office back in October. Thomas attempted to withdraw his guilty plea prior to sentencing yesterday, but the judge in the case refused. Thomas will serve his term without hard labor and with credit for any time served. He will also be eligible for work release.
When can an oil company seize your land to build a pipeline and who gives them permission. The answers are pretty much anytime they want and without you permission. That leads us to a hearing today, in the case that’s delayed construction on a portion of the Bayou Bridge Pipeline, after owners of land in St. Martinville say crews were illegally building, clearing trees and digging up land on their 32 acre property for nearly 60 days. The land owners are trying to fight the law that allowed the oil company to enter their property.
Congressman Ralph Abraham says soybean farmers are having issues with accessing the Market Facilitation Program, originally designed to help farmers, because of the recent congestion with crop elevators due to the nations trade war. He says the only step being take right now, is a bill that he’s pushing that alters the payment structure for the MFP. Abraham says many farmers are in danger of facing bankruptcy due to the issue, and he’s willing to do what it takes to get the ball rolling as fast as possible
Reports have pegged Texas A&M Head Coach Jimbo Fisher’s nephew, Cole Fisher as the assailant who attacked LSU Analyst Steve Kragthorpe after the Aggies 74-72 win over LSU Saturday night. USA Today Reporter Glen Guilbeau says the seven overtime barnburner was the highlight of a night full of controversy, something that likely won’t be forgotten, or forgiven by fans of both teams. Kragthorpe suffers from Parkinsons and says the hit, which landed on his pacemaker, made his heart flutter.
This past Saturday proved to make a huge impact on locally owned shops and restaurants as the movement known as “Small Business Saturday” saw big numbers. National Federation of Independent Business Louisiana spokesperson Dawn Starns says looking at the full shopping period between Thanksgiving and Christmas, more than two-thirds of small business owners expect sales to be stronger than 2017. Small Business Saturday was first recognized in 2010.
Venezuela will hold onto its U.S.-based Citgo refineries, including one in Lake Charles, settling a lawsuit that threw ownership of the struggling country's prized assets into peril.
Court papers show that Venezuela on Friday began paying off $1.4 billion that a panel said was owed to the Canadian mining firm Crystallex, following a disputed takeover of the company by the late-President Hugo Chavez. Citgo operates a 426,000-barrel-per-day-capacity refinery in Lake Charles, the sixth-largest refinery in the U.S., employing 1,800 company and contract workers. Plus facilities in Corpus Christi and Lemont, Illinois.
A Baton Rouge rapper known as Blvd Quick was found dead early Monday after a shooting at an apartment complex in East Baton Rouge. Police were called to the scene shortly after midnight where they found the body of 25 year old Ashton Wells. Police say this killing marks the 77th homicide in East Baton Rouge Parish for the year, a figure still below last year’s record high number of homicides.
The Saints are on a 10 win streak, looking comfortably like the best team in the NFL behind the most efficient season in Drew Brees’ career, and a surging defense that’s forced 10 interceptions and 12 fumbles. With five games left in the season, the Saints could eclipse the franchise regular season win record of 13. The Saints face a resurgent Cowboys team Thursday night in Dallas. The Cowboys are on a three game win streak and are in the thick of the playoff hunt.
News for Monday 112618
Compiled by Dave Graichen
A two vehicle Saturday night claimed the life of a Leesville man. State police say the accident happened on highway 8 west of Leesville when two vehicles collided head on. The crash claimed the life of a 22 year old male passenger. The cause of the crash is still under investigation.
Early voting for the December 8th election is now underway. There are 134 candidate runoffs in 47 parishes. John Couvillon of JCM Analytics says the Shreveport mayoral race is one high profile election heading to a run-off, then there is the Secretary of State runoff, plus there are other local races… early voting ends on Saturday.
Thousands of 2016 Louisiana flood victims continue to wait for President Donald Trump to sign a waiver so they can be eligible for disaster aid. Flooded homeowners who took out Small Business Administration disaster loans remain ineligible for grant dollars, because of the federal government’s duplication of benefits policy. Congress approved a law in October to allow Louisiana flood victims who got an S-B-A loan to also be eligible for federal grants through the Restore Louisiana program.
It’s Cyber Monday a chance for consumers to find great deals on the internet. Southeast Louisiana Better Business Bureau spokesperson Cynthia Albert says before you purchase any item on the internet, make sure you know who you are dealing with first, because there are a lot of fake websites out there. She says if you are in a generous mood and plan on donating money, you can check if the charity is legit at give-dot-org…
Senator John Kennedy is expected to announce this week on whether he’ll run for Governor in 2019 against John Bel Edwards. Southeastern Louisiana Professor Dayne Sherman expects Kennedy to get in the race, as even if he loses, he’ll retain his seat. Sherman says Attorney General Jeff Landry’s decision to seek reelection all but sealed the deal on Kennedy’s run.
Christmas tree farms are generally seeing a fair crop this year. And it is looking much better than the last couple of years. That’s according to Gray Anderson of Grant Farms in Alan Parish, who says weather has had an effect on the crop in previous years. Anderson says his farm sells between 2,500 and 3,000 trees each year.
A convicted child rapist, and former Catholic Priest has died in prison while serving out his life sentence. Corrections officials says 82-year-old Robert Lester Melancon died of natural causes. Melancon was convicted in 1996 for raping an altar boy from 1985 to 1991 while he was a priest in Terrebonne Parish.
An LSU Manship School Assistant Professor says his research shows the loss of local media can make towns a lot more partisan. Joshua Darr says the study was a joint effort with researchers from Colorado State and Texas A&M, where they analyzed the rate of voters who turned in ballots supporting candidates from more than one party. Darr says that’s because when local media dies, the often more heavily partisan national outlets fill the gap. Darr says his research reinforced the importance of keeping local news alive and supported, so that local voters can be fully informed about local candidates history and positions on vital local issues, as opposed to just falling back on party line voting.
LSU suffered an absolute heart breaking loss on Saturday to Texas A&M as the Aggies outlasted the Tigers 74-72 in seven overtimes. There were several questionable calls that went Texas A-and-M’s way. LSU will find out its bowl destination on December 2nd.
LSU fell four spots in the AP Top 25 Poll after its 74-72, seven-overtime loss to Texas A&M that had the most total points in FBS history. LSU (9-3) is now even with Washington State at No. 12. The Aggies (8-4) moved from unranked to No. 22 in the poll.
Those who vote in the USA Today Coaches poll apparently weren't all that impressed with LSU in its historic seven-overtime loss to Texas A&M on Saturday. The Tigers fell six spots to No. 14 in the latest version of the poll voted on by a panel of college football coaches. Texas A&M (8-4) moved into the poll at No. 22 after it was unranked last week.
News for Wednesday 112118
Compiled by Dave Graichen
The Louisiana tradition of frying a turkey for Thanksgiving can be disastrous if not done correctly. Thanksgiving often results in a flood of calls to first responders. State Fire Marshal Butch Browning says to make sure your frying pot is on grass or concrete, not on a wooden surface. Also, that it is far enough away from anything combustible. Browning says the main reason for a turkey fry turning into a fiery situation is due to the grease overflowing from the frying pot. Also, be sure the bird is dry when you lower him into the water.. bon appetite!
Governor Edwards say minimum wage increase successes in other southern states have galvanized his administration and their allies to push for a pay raise for working class Louisianans again in the next legislative session. Edwards has stuck to his guns on the issue since his 2015 election, where he made raising the minimum a key plank in his platform. While Arkansas jumped to 11 an hour, and Missouri voted in 12 over time, Edwards says he plans to pursue what he calls his modest campaign pledge, more like $8.50 an hour. Lobby groups say they will oppose the increase.
A Mandeville couple has something additional to be thankful for as they were cleaning house preparing for family coming into town and found a winning lottery ticket, just two weeks shy of expiration. The ticket was valued at 1.8 million dollars, as it was the sole jackpot-winning ticket from a June drawing. Louisiana Lottery spokesperson BreAnne Frye says the ticket was found on a nightstand. We should all be so lucky.
The numbers don’t lie.. Louisiana spent almost 35-thousand dollars on attorney fees to settle the sexual harassment suit against former Secretary of State Tom Schedler. That’s in addition to the 149-thousand dollars that went to the alleged victim in the out of court settlement. That brings the total taxpayers pain to $184,000. Schedler also personally paid 18-thousand dollars to the ex-employee.
Chris John is out as president of the Louisiana Mid-Continent Oil and Gas Association after leading the organization for the past 11 years. John has been on the front lines lobbying at the State Capitol for legislation that benefits the state’s energy industry. John said in a statement it was time for him to move on to his next adventure.
A judge has ruled the Vermilion Parish School Board broke the state’s open meeting law when they threw out a teacher who spoke against a 30-thousand dollar raise for Superintendent Jerome Puyua (PEE-oh) during a January board meeting. The incident drew national media attention. The judge also threw out Superintendent Puyau’s 30-thousand raise.
A 105-year prison sentence has been handed down against 56-year-old Douglas Holley, who was convicted of a crime in which he detonated a homemade bomb in an effort to kill a Bossier Parish veterinarian and his wife. Holley worked as a horse farm handyman and prospectors say he was upset they couldn’t save his horse from dying. The bomb did not hurt Bobby Hewlett or his wife.
Two are under arrest in connection to the October 14th shooting death of a Lafayette area boxer, 28-year-old Brandon Broussard. Both suspects are facing Second Degree Murder charges.
On Thanksgiving night, the Saints will go after their 10th straight win when they host the Atlanta Falcons. Running back Mark Ingram says the team is on an amazing run… Kick-off Thursday is at 7:20. Airtime 5p on 96.9 KZMZ
News for Tuesday 112018
Compiled by Dave Graichen
A deal has been announced that would end litigation between the Rapides Parish Police Jury and District Attorney's Office. DA Phillip Terrell says the deal includes a 10 percent salary cut for him and all his assistant district attorneys. However, those cuts do not extend to other staff members in the office. Terrell also said four "high-paid" positions that are currently vacant won't be filled. The deal is part of the DA’s budget request for 2019.
Whether you plan to travel on the roadway, by plane, or on cruise ship, AAA is forecasting the number of travelers for the Thanksgiving holiday to be the highest since 2005. AAA spokesperson Don Redman says the higher number of travelers is likely a sign of confidence in the economy.
Louisiana ATC can now enforce a law barring anyone under the age of 21 from working as an erotic dancer in bars and nightclubs, in a court reversal of a hold on a 2016 anti-trafficking law that Solicitor General Liz Murrill says was justified, and needed.
The Department of Children and Family Services is teaming up with the United Way in an effort to expand workforce training for food stamp recipients in seven southeast Louisiana parishes. DCFS Secretary Marketa Garner Walters says the money is used to reimburse organizations already doing such training for people on the SNAP rolls. It’s hoped funding will soon be available for the rest of the state.
Authorities are searching for a Baton Rouge man accused of killing his wife and injuring two of her relatives in a stabbing at the family's home Sunday night. 49 year old Michael Vallery, according to police, fled the scene after fatally stabbing his wife. The two female family members were found in the home suffering from apparent stab wounds.
Children who suffer from severe peanut allergies may be in luck, as a new treatment can help mitigate the potentially deadly effects of accidental ingestion. It’s an oral medication that builds up peanut tolerance in allergy sufferers over six months. LSU Health New Orleans ran the experiment on 372 children. Two thirds of the participants who took the treatments saw positive results. One in 50 Americans is estimated to have a peanut allergy.
1,230 new direct and indirect jobs are headed to St. James Parish as Wanhua Chemical selects Convent for the location of its new factory. It’s a 1.25 billion dollar, 250-acre complex that’s set to begin construction next year. Louisiana Economic Development Secretary Don Pierson says deep water and quality infrastructure make it a good fit. Wanhua is a Chinese company with a global reach that Peirson says dominates its chemical industry, and already has a facility in Europe.
It’s less than three days from Thanksgiving, and if you’re roasting a bird you’ll want to make sure your guests don’t end up regretting it on black Friday.experts with the LSU AgCenter say the most important thing you can do to keep the family safe is cooking that turkey long enough to blast the bacteria. And while you’re at it, you might want to get a head start on putting that turkey so it has time to defrost. The so called experts are again saying you shouldn’t wash the turkey for fear of cross contamination.. they obviously have never been to a poultry processing plant..
The funeral is set for a police officer in Slidell who died Saturday from injuries suffered in an on-duty motorcycle in September while he was escorting a funeral procession. The services for Officer Jason Seals will be held Wednesday at noon. He was survived by his wife and three young children.
One of the most anticipated NFL games of the season lived up to its immense hype.
The Los Angeles Rams outlasted the Kansas City Chiefs, 54-51, in the highest scoring game in the 49-season history of Monday Night Football.
The New Orleans Pelicans finished off a three-game home stand with a 140-126 victory over the San Antonio Spurs on Monday night . It was the third consecutive victory for the Pelicans who were playing their third game in the Smoothie King Center in four nights. Tomorrow night, the Pels are in Philadelphia t take on the 76ers..hear that game starting at 5:30p on 97.4 ESPN.
News for Monday 111918
Compiled By Dave Graichen
For a 13th consecutive month, Louisiana has reported an increase in jobs. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says nonfarm employment has increased by 19-thousand jobs since October 2017. Alexandria and Houma were two metro areas though that actually saw job losses from September to October.
Wanhua Chemical, which is based in China, announces plans to build a 1.25 billion dollar chemical manufacturing complex in St. James Parish in the town of Convent. The 250-acre manufacturing site will create 170 new direct jobs.
5th district Republican Congressman Ralph Abraham says he supports a work or educational requirement for an able-bodied adult to be eligible for SNAP written into the Farm Bill. Abraham says the current version of the Senate Farm Bill is seeing hurdles in the lame duck session, as he says Dems want to completely rewrite the bill. Abraham says there is a chance that there may be an agreement reached with the Farm Bill before the lame duck sessions ends.
US Representative Mike Johnson has been named Republican Study Committee Chairman which gives Louisiana more clout in Congress. In a statement Johnson said with the Republican Party becoming the minority party in the House, this committee has a vital responsibility to present practical ideas and effective policy initiatives and vigorously defend and advance core conservative principles.
A young leader is emerging in Avoyelles Parish. 19-year-old Stanley Celestine Junior has been elected to the Avoyelles school board and will begin serving his term in January. The district just received a “C” grade from the state department of education. Over half of Avoyelles Parish schools received either a D or F grade. Celestine says one of the first things he wants to look at is the school system’s discipline policies.
Baton Rouge has been flooded with gunfire over the last week, with a 20 percent increase in shots fired, and 10 dead from shootings in the last 15 days including a kindergartner who was shot by a 13-year-old. Police Chief Murphy Paul attributes the majority of these shootings to drug related crime. This spike in shootings comes after months of peace.
Repairs to the Sunshine Bridge in St. James Parish are ahead of schedule. The bridge has been closed due to a barge carrying a crane colliding with the structure last month. The detour has inconvenienced the nearly 25,000 drivers who use the bridge daily. DOTD spokesperson Rodney Mallett says although they are seeing much progress, he says weather is always a variable that can alter the speed of repairs. State officials hope to have the bridge reopened in January.
A suspected serial killer has confessed to the murder of two Terrebonne Parish women. The murders happened in 1982 and 1996. Houma Police Sgt. Travis Theriot says detectives believe the suspect, 78 year-old Samuel Little, killed dozens of women in several states. Little is currently serving multiple life sentences in a Texas jail. He also confessed to killing 29-year-old Melissa Thomas of Opelousas in 1996.
The American Farm Bureau reports the average cost for Thanksgiving dinner has gone down the past three years. The bureau conducted a survey of grocery stores across 37 states, Louisiana Farm Bureau Representative Avery Davidson says the average price nationwide to feed ten people is $48.90, but the Bayou State is one of the best in regards to cost. Davidson says the turkeys at Louisiana grocery stores are cheaper here than in other parts of the country.
Fifteen people were rescued from a boat near Grand Isle early Sunday morning after reports the vessel was taking on water. The liftboat, a vessel capable of elevating itself on legs to create a stable platform, often used in offshore oil extraction or construction, had 15 people on board when problems were reported at 3:16 a.m. The master of the liftboat reported it was tilting at 45 degrees and had no power, leaving it unable to right itself. A good Samaritan vessel rescued six people, and Coast Guard members rescued the remaining nine.
The Saints are playing unbelievable football. They smoked the defending Super Bowl champion Eagles yesterday 48-7 for their ninth straight win. It’s the third straight game they’ve scored 40 points or more. The Saints have won nine in a row and they have a three-game lead over Carolina for first place in the NFC South.
LSU got its offense back on track versus a weak Rice Owls team as the Bayou Bengals had 552 yards of total offense in a 42-10 win. LSU has one regular season game left and its this Saturday versus Texas A&M. A ten-win season and a berth into a New Year’s Bowl game is on the line for the Tigers. LSU jumped two spots to No. 8 in both the AP Top 25 and the USA Today Coaches Poll, which were released Sunday.
It's official: Les Miles has been named new Kansas head football coach. The 65 year old Miles signed a five-year, $2,775,000 per-year contract at Kansas, and he was formally introduced at a 5 p.m. news conference in Lawrence on Sunday.
News for Friday 111618
Compiled By Dave Graichen
The price at the pump continues to decline. The average price for a gallon of regular gasoline is $2.34 in Louisiana today, down nine cents since last week, putting prices just two cents higher than a year ago. Gas Buddy.com senior petroleum analyst Patrick DeHaan says some gas stations in the state are selling gas below $2 per gallon.
LSU announced Thursday that it had agreed to a settlement with former football coach Les Miles, bringing his final contract with the university to a close and allowing “both parties to move forward." LSU and Miles agreed to a lump-sum settlement that would pay the former Tigers coach $1.5 million of the remaining $6.5 million he was owed through 2023. Miles, who is now 65, lives in Baton Rouge, and reports have recently connected him to the coaching opening at the University of Kansas. It’s unclear if Thursday’s announcement is a sign that Miles is negotiating with Kansas, but the settlement frees up the opportunity for Miles to pursue another job.
Senator John Kennedy says the chances for a passage of any long term flood insurance program renewal in the lame duck session are slim. The program is set to expire November 30th, and in the meantime Kennedy says he’s proposing a six month renewal while a long term fix continues to be hashed out. Unlike most of the problems on Capitol Hill, Kennedy says this one isn’t actually about Democrats and Republicans, it’s more about people who live near water vs. those who don’t, and those who don’t just don’t consider it a priority…
A man convicted of three California murders and suspected in numerous other deaths, including three in Louisiana, now claims he was involved in about 90 killings nationwide spanning nearly four decades, and investigators in Texas already have corroborated about a third of those The Louisiana killings were in Opelousas, Houma and Gray.
78-year-old Samuel Little was booked into jail this week following his indictment in the 1994 death of a Texas woman.
Medicaid has come under fire in the wake of a Legislative Auditor’s report that showed the service may have paid up to 85 million in healthcare costs for people who were not wage eligible for the program at the time they received coverage, and today, Medicaid launched a new verification system that more frequently checks wage eligibility. Louisiana Medicaid Director Jen Steele says this should prevent that in the future.
The online system will also provide instant feedback on applications to join Medicaid.
Attorney General Jeff Landry says he’s running for re-election because he sees crime as the biggest issue facing Louisiana in the near future, and AG’s are best situated to tackle it. Landry says Medicaid fraud and abuse is another major issue he’ll tackle if re-elected. No Democrats have jumped into the AG’s race yet.
Food delivery service Waitr is going public on the NASDAQ stock exchange this Friday. The company started in Louisiana in 2013 and has since expanded into over 230 cities in the southeast. CEO Chris Meaux says services like Waitr have opened restaurant owners to the idea of using third party delivery companies. Meaux says restaurants will not only see cost savings, but continued growth of revenue with delivery companies such as Waitr.
Three people are dead after being among four men that were shot Wednesday night in Baton Rouge. The motive and suspects are unknown at this time, but authorities say they believe there were two gunmen. Baton Rouge Police Department spokesperson Sgt. L’Jean Mckneely says the initially while two victims died at the scene, the other two victims had survived. But, a third one died this afternoon.
The Southern Poverty Law Center has released a new report highlighting the lack of recorded data published on police activity in Louisiana in reference to traffic stops. S-P-L-C attorney Jamila Johnson says due to a lack of clear punishments for failures to follow the law, it’s difficult to get the compliance that is needed.
LSU will honor 18 seniors on Saturday night as the Fighting Tigers host Rice in the final game in Tiger Stadium this season. Senior tight end Foster Moreau has mixed emotions, as he’s loved his time at LSU, but at the same time he’s looking forward to this game….
The Saints host the Eagles on Sunday and Quarterback Drew Brees could have a chance to throw passes to a new wide receiver. Recently signed Brandon Marshall says he’s ready to contribute and quarterback Drew Brees believes Marshall is a good fit for the offense. The Eagles come in with a record 4-5, but Brees knows it will not be an easy game…
News for Thursday 111518
Compiled By Dave Graichen
Today is recognized as the Great American Smokeout, an observation started by the American Cancer Society in 1975. Spokesperson for Louisiana’s Smoking Cessation Trust Jim Pittman says the observation was started in an effort to get tobacco users to kick the habit in favor of using money spent on smoking toward charity. According to a recent report, about 23% of adults in Louisiana smoke.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis has announced the Gross Domestic Product grew in Louisiana for the second quarter of 2018, making it the 12th fastest economic growth in the nation, and third among the 12 states of the southeastern region. LSU economist Loren Scott says the state’s percentage rate of growth just barely outpaces the national average. Scott says the news creates optimism for the state, even in the oil patch, where recent years have not been kind to the industry.
Louisiana’s Attorney General says he’s running for re-election, taking him out as a possible candidate to challenge for the Governor’s mansion next year. Landry says he’s comfortable he can best serve the state by continuing in his current job. When it comes to GOP contenders for the Governors election, Baton Rouge businessman Eddie Rispone has announced his entrance into the race, while Sen. John Kennedy says he’ll make his decision by December 1.
Governor Edwards is criticizing a decision by interim Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin to publicly claim the former Mayor of New Roads “illegally cast his ballot” in the midterm election, when the Governor says further review showed Robert Myer was actually eligible to vote. Ardoin says he made that assertion after discovering Myer’s name was never added to the “can’t vote” list after his conviction in January.
A half-inch of snow fell in Monroe Wednesday morning, and the national weather service says its the earliest recorded accumulated snowfall in Monroe’s history.
Congressman Steve Scalise will be House Minority Whip for the 116th Congress after winning in a unanimous vote. UL Lafayette Poli Sci Professor Pearson Cross says as the current Majority Whip, it’s a role Scalise is very familiar with. California Congressman Kevin McCarthy is taking the reins of Minority Leader in the House next year. A leadership vote for Speaker has not been held yet by the Democrats, but reports say current House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi is the favorite.
New Orleans was the host city for WWE’s annual Wrestlemania event back in April, and now we know the economic impact. It’s estimated that the over 78-thousand in attendance for the event at the Mercedes Benz Superdome contributed to a $175-million boom for the economy of the New Orleans region.
Governor Edwards was out in California Wednesday for the Rolling Stone/Variety Summit on Criminal Justice Reform, where he was on a panel discussing how Criminal Justice reforms are shaping up in Louisiana, and how successes in Louisiana can be used elsewhere. The summit hopes to use the power of entertainment to spread a pro-reform message across the country.
A 71-year-old Mandeville financial adviser who stole more than $1.1 million from elderly investors has been sentenced to 14 years in federal prison. Ralph Willard Savoie, who previously pleaded guilty to wire fraud, also was ordered Tuesday by Chief U.S. District Judge Shelly Dick to pay $1.1 million-plus in restitution and forfeit another $1.1 million. Savoie, who also had an office in Baton Rouge, defrauded clients by using their money for personal expenses, to pay off other investors and to invest in a risky real estate venture.
One of the nation’s top high school running backs in the nation has committed to LSU. Destrehan’s John Emery is rated as the second best running back in the country, according to 24-7 sports. Tiger Rag Editor James Moran says this is a big win for Coach Ed Orgeron on the recruiting front. Emery committed to Georgia during the summer, but de-committed 12 days later after watching the Tigers upset the Bulldogs in Death Valley.
News for Wednesday 111418
Compiled By Dave Graichen
Winter weather is here to stay. State Climatologist Barry Keim says this cold front is an introduction to the winter as arctic air has settled. Today the northern part of the state will see temperatures in the twenties, central Louisiana will be in the thirties, and the southern portion will experience the warmest weather with temperatures in the fifties.
Keim says this weekend the Bayou state will see some higher temperatures.
By the way.. Cold weather resulted in snow flurries in the Shreveport area yesterday morning.
When temperatures go below freezing in Louisiana, the fire risk increases. State Fire Marshal Butch Browning says the first priority to keep your family safe is to make sure your home has working smoke alarms. Browning says the use of space heaters is quite common, saying it’s important to keep them five feet away from anything combustible, don’t overload wall outlets, and do not use them with extension cords. Browning insists that no one use a kitchen stove top or oven in an attempt to warm their home.
Local authorities are still looking for one suspect in a Rapides Parish burglary and theft ring. The APD put out an alert for 34 Year old Kevin Harris of Pineville on a laundry list of charges. The department busted the ring, arresting two people last week. Anyone with information on Kevin Harris is asked to contact police.
Legislative Auditor Daryl Purpera says the state Medicaid program potentially paid 85 million dollars in medical costs for people who may not have been eligible for benefits. Medicaid previously only checked wage eligibility every 12 months, and Purpera says that led to overpayments relative to other states who check eligibility more frequently.
But that policy is now changing, as the state will be checking eligibility more frequently starting in January.
71 percent of early education programs in the state were rated proficient, up five percent from last year according to the Louisiana Department of Education. Policy Institute for Children Executive Director Melanie Bronfin says the state though is seriously lacking when it comes to childcare support for working class.
Food banks are seeing empty shelves as the holidays are approaching. President and CEO of the Greater Baton Rouge Food Bank Mike Manning says the nation responding to areas hardest hit by natural disasters are having a negative impact of the food bank’s ability to fill the shelves with food. Manning says a contributing factor is the lack of excess production as a result of ongoing natural disasters. Manning says in order to fix the issue, it’ll just take more donations.
The ACLU of Louisiana is looking for answers from authorities after a Winnfield woman lost sight in her right eye due to a police taser. ACLU spokesperson Bruce Hamilton says Tanisha White had gone to a private residence to speak with someone, while there she called the Winnfield Police. Details on how and why white was hit with a taser are not clear. Hamilton says the open request for policies regarding the use of force have been unanswered, with the department refusing to comment on the case.
Sad story out of Baton Rouge as a piano teacher was killed in Mississippi while helping out a motorist who was involved in a crash. Mississippi Highway Patrol says 52-year-old Leslie Wood was killed on I-55 when a semi hit Wood’s vehicle on the side of the road and hit her too. Wood taught at Baton Rouge Magnet High School.
News for Tuesday 111318
Compiled By Dave Graichen
Three 13-year-olds have been arrested by the Grant Parish Sheriff’s Office after a student overheard them planning a shooting at Grant Junior High and reported it to authorities. As of right now, they are facing charges of terrorizing. The news of the arrests comes less than a week after voters rejected a 1 percent sales tax that would have put Grant deputies into parish schools as school resource officers, as well as funding the D.A.R.E. program, providing equipment, salaries and benefits for deputies.
A threat to Hammond Magnet High School was posted early Monday morning to social media, resulting in the school being closed before students arrived. Police are saying nothing was found during a search of the campus.
Chilled temperatures take over the Bayou state this week. Louisiana is stuck with rain and clouds throughout the early portion of today. But State Climatologist Barry Keim says dryer conditions are on the way. Keim says if you thought today was cold with highs in the mid-40s to 50s, it gets even colder as the week progresses. Good news is we’ll see daytime temps back in the 60’s by Friday and sunshine through the weekend.
Here in Cenla we had reports of close to two inched of rain in some locations since Saturday.. In Shreveport / Bossier better than 3 ½ inches of rain fell and that shut down interstate 20 yesterday morning for several hours. Everything is now back to normal.
Police are on the hunt for the gunman who ambushed a man outside of a funeral in Crowley. The funeral was being held for a late October shooting victim, and his mother who passed away from health complications two days later. Crowley Police Chief Jimmy Broussard says it’s a horrific event, but thankfully no one else at the funeral or outside of the building was injured in the shooting. He says the minister was able to keep his congregation safe during the chaos.
Bienville Parish Sheriff John Ballance says his deputies are looking to the arrest the person who fired a bullet into an apartment complex in Ringgold killing 31-year-old Shanette Carter. The Sheriff says Carter’s five-year-old child found her mom dead. Detectives do not believe Carter was the target of the bullet, but rather a victim of a stray bullet.
Republican Senator Rick Ward of Port Allen is attempting to build awareness and public support for a new bridge crossing the Mississippi River with a TV ad that started airing last week. Ward says the new bridge would help alleviate the congested roadway issues for Baton Rouge and outlying areas. The proposed bridge doesn’t have a solidified location yet, but the estimated cost is about $1 billion.
Congratulations to a friend and colleague. Louisiana Radio Network’s Don Molino, a familiar voice for 30 years has been named the 2018 National Farm Broadcaster of the Year. Molino says he was shocked upon hearing his name announced at the National Farm Broadcasters annual convention in Kansas City, Missouri this past Friday.
A Pearl River man has been arrested and charged with negligent homicide in the killing of a friend while they were hunting hogs in the Honey Island Swamp. 22-year-old Donald Jones of Pearl River was arrested Saturday after he told wildlife officials he accidentally shot 23-year-old Zachary Swanson of Slidell. Authorities say Jones fired toward a hog, but hit his friend instead.
After losing six in a row, the Pelicans took a two-game win streak into Toronto last night where New Orleans faced the12-and-1 Raptors. So now make a three game winning streak. The Pels beat the Raptors 126 - 110
Not many LSU fans were excited about the Tigers 24-17 win over Arkansas on Saturday. The expectation was for LSU to win by a lot more points against a team that has just two wins and has played poorly on defense this season. Coach Ed Orgeron calls it a nice bounce back win after getting shut out by Alabama. LSU returns to Tiger Stadium to host 1-and-10 Rice. Add cornerback Kristian Fulton to the injury list. Orgeron says Fulton will be out awhile.
After torching the Bengal’s defense Sunday, Saint’s head coach Sean Payton admits to smashing a fire alarm in the visitor’s locker room about thirty minutes before the Saints smashed the Bengal’s on their home field. Peyton says the alarm had been going off for about 15 minutes when he decided to put an end to the racket. It’s not clear if he’ll face any penalties, but the Bengals say they’ve contacted the authorities.
Monday night Football it was the NY Giants over the 49ers 27 to 23
News for Monday 111218
Compiled By Dave Graichen
The mother of an infant that was found burned alive in a barn in Natchitoches has been indicted on 1st degree murder. 23-year-old Hannah Baker allegedly asked her partner, Felicia Smith to murder her child. On July 17th, police say Smith set took the child from Bakers home and set it on fire, but Baker says her child was stolen against her will during a break in.
On Wednesday and Thursday of last week, investigators from Louisiana State Police, in conjunction with numerous other law enforcement agencies, conducted a criminal enforcement detail in Avoyelles, Rapides, Vernon, and Winn Parishes. The objective was to serve fugitive warrants and apprehend individuals engaged in criminal activity. Authorities report along with the 49 individuals arrested, law enforcement officers also seized various illegal drugs, several firearms, bullet proof vests, and currency.
Those looking for an excuse to break out that beloved hoodie or sweater will get the opportunity to do so for the next few days. The National Weather Service says much of the state will flirt with freezing temps overnight Tuesday night into Wednesday morning.
Secretary of State candidate Gwen Collins-Greenup is the surprise of the midterms, as the Democrat will head to a run-off against Interim Secretary Kyle Ardoin. Collins-Greenup was just 10 thousand votes shy of topping the Interim Secretary, despite little fundraising and not securing the Democratic Party’s backing, which went to 3rd place candidate Renee Fontenot Free. She says she never viewed herself as an underdog.
Collins-Greenup raised less than 3,000 dollars for her run. The run-off election will be held December 8th.
Six weeks from today it’s Christmas Eve and the National Retail Federation projects a consumer will spend on average, 1,007 dollars this holiday season, up 4 percent over last year. N-R-F spokesperson Ana Serafin Smith says we’ve never seen a November and December this big. 21 percent of consumers say they already started their shopping back in October.
The Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority is working on a $34 million project that will use rock-filled sacks to protect the Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge in Cameron Parish. Authority project manager Bevin Barringer says an aggregate material is being used to keep the so called pillows, about the size of a small car, from sinking in the mucky soil. With erosion rapidly taking its toll on the area, Barringer says the objective is to stabilize the shoreline.
The Saints clobbered Cincinnati 51-14 yesterday for the Black and Gold’s eighth straight win. Quarterback Drew Brees threw as many touchdown passes as incompletions, three. Michael Thomas had two touchdown catches and Alvin Kamara also found the end zone twice. Some analysts warned this was a trap game, with a home game against Eagles coming up next. But Brees says the players were ready to play…
LSU heads into its final home game of the year of the with an 8-2 record after holding on to beat Arkansas 24-17 on a frigid night in Fayetteville. The Tigers looked like they were going to win this game going away, but the Hogs scored two fourth quarter touchdowns. Coach Ed Orgeron was happy, even though the game got close…
LSU got leaped in the AP Top 25 by Washington State, falling a single spot to No. 10 in the poll, which was released Sunday afternoon. LSU (8-2) beat Arkansas 24-17 Saturday night, but it wasn't enough to keep them ahead of Washington State (9-1), which jumped two spots after the Cougars beat Colorado 31-7. There was no movement for LSU in the USA Today Coaches Poll, where they remain No. 10 after Week 11 of the NCAA football season. The three teams from the Southeastern Conference in the AP Top 25 Poll's top 10 are ranked the same way in the Coaches Poll: No. 1 Alabama (10-0), No. 5 Georgia (9-1), No. 10 LSU (8-2)
ESPN is reporting The New Orleans Saints could possibly sign another wide receiver this week after Dez Bryant's ill-fated Achilles injury placed him on the IR this week. It’s reported the Saints will reach back out to Brandon Marshall, who worked out for the Saints on Tuesday, with a deal possibly being made early this week. The report says Marshall, who was released by the Seattle Seahawks on Oct. 30, impressed the Saints during his workout, and could be playing as early as next week when the Saints take on the Philadelphia Eagles at the Mercedes-Benz Superdome in Week 11.
News for Friday 110918
Compiled by Dave Graichen
Fall will arrive with a vengeance at the start of this weekend. Rain may stick around as cool air barrels in from Canada but State Climatologist Barry Keim says though a freeze is possible around Wednesday of next week north Louisiana doesn’t have much to worry about this weekend…
Fewer public schools received an “A” grade while the percentage of schools that received an “F” went up, as school performance scores were released yesterday. State Education Superintendent John White says the decline in schools that received an “A” is because Louisiana has raised the bar for what it takes to earn the highest grade.
The body of a Natchitoches man, who had been reported missing, has been found in the Cane River Lake. According to the NPSO, 31 year old Randal Evans suffered from some mental issues. Family members reported him missing on November 3rd, after he wandered away from the family home.
Two deep red Republican run states voted in minimum wage hikes on Tuesday. Arkansas went up to 11 dollars an hour by 2021, and Missouri increased to 12 by 2023. But efforts to even get minimum wage increases on the ballot in the Bayou State have stalled out the past three years, but New Orleans Senator Troy Carter says Arkansas’s example will help the case in Louisiana. Louisiana’s minimum wage is currently 7.25, which went into effect as a federal minimum in 2009.
Louisiana is home to 278-thousand veterans. With this Sunday being Veterans Day, there are various events going on throughout the state. Louisiana Department of Veterans Affairs Secretary Col. Joey Strickland says it’s important to remember our country is still at war and be willing to help as those that are fighting as they are coming home.
Authorities in Caldwell Parish have arrested a McDonalds employs, after she dropped a hand gun inside the store, causing it to discharge into a wall. The Sheriff’s office says the bullet hit a water line in the ceiling. The woman was arrested on unspecified gun and drug charges. Good news is, no one was injured.
Could Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry be in the running to replace Jeff Sessions, who resigned from his post as U.S. attorney general earlier this week? Speculation swirled on Thursday -- two days after Sessions submitted his resignation at the president's request -- that Landry may have made it onto the White House's short list of candidates to take the reins as attorney general. Meanwhile, Politico reported that Kansas secretary of state Kris Kobach, who lost a bid for governor this week, and former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani are among potential top-tier candidates.
The parent organization of Pi Beta Phi confirmed Thursday that it has halted activities at their chapter house at LSU after receiving information alleging events at the sorority that “may have constituted hazing. A spokesperson for the organization says no one was physically harmed and no alcohol was involved. Pi Beta Phi immediately informed university officials and began an investigation
The mayor of Maringouin (Mar-in gwah) in Iberville Parish, who claims "substantial irregularities and error" caused her to lose her re-election bid by four votes this week, asked a state court Thursday to either declare her the winner or order a new election. Challenger Maurice Harris drew 351 votes to incumbent Demi Lynn Vorise's 347 in Tuesday's mayoral election. Vorise says she has identified at least 29 ineligible voters who cast ballots in the election..
The volunteer fire department in French Settlement was left with less than $1,000 in the bank and an unpaid insurance bill that threatened a shutdown when authorities arrested the treasurer last week. Melissa Guitreau, who is married to the fire chief, was accused of embezzling $225,000 from the fire department over the course of a year and a half. Now, the Livingston Parish Council and businesses in the area are pitching in to keep the Livingston Parish Fire Protection District No. 8 running. Local businesses raised $9,300 to fund the fire departments operations through the end of the year.
Turnout for the midterm elections in Louisiana was 48 percent. That’s in comparison to the only 40 percent of eligible voters who participated in the 2015 governor’s race run-off between David Vitter and now Governor Edwards. It tough to answer exactly why Louisianans have grown less engaged with state issues over the decades, but LSU Public Policy Research Lab Director Mike Henderson says it could be due to a media climate that’s increasingly focused on high profile races for federal seats.
The Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services is celebrating a record breaking number of adoptions from foster care, with 912 children finding homes in the Federal Fiscal Year of 2018. It’s an 18% increase from the previous record set last year. DCFS Secretary Marketa Garner Walters credits additional staffing support as well as families wanting to take in more than just one child.
A Gonzales woman was killed Wednesday night in an eleven vehicle pileup on Interstate 10 in Ascension Parish. State Trooper Bryan Lee says an 18-wheeler caused the chain reaction crash. Lee says the driver of the semi-truck has been booked into the Ascension Parish Jail for Negligent Homicide and 18 counts of Negligent Injuring.
Saints coach Sean Payton spoke today about the team’s new acquisition, former Cowboys star Dez Bryant. Payton says the former All-Pro wide receiver is about five pounds heavier than he should be, but that’s to be expected. Bryant has been known as a problem child. But Payton says the Saints have a special culture and it will be a good fit for Bryant.
If LSU is able to win its final three games, the Tigers are in position to play in one the New Years Six bowl games. CBS Senior Writer Jerry Palm says the Sugar Bowl in New Orleans is a possibility for the Tigers. If Georgia doesn’t make the four-team playoff or if the Bulldogs do not finish higher than LSU in the college football playoff rankings, than LSU will end up at the Sugar Bowl.
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