News for Thursday 020818
By Dave Graichen
Pineville-based Cleco Corporate Holdings has acquired South Central Generating LLC, which includes nine utility cooperatives and eight generating assets in Arkansas, Louisiana and Texas, totaling one-billion-dollars. Spokesperson Jennifer Cahill says they will be able to significantly increase the scale of their operations in Louisiana with the ability to provide over 35-hundred megawatts of power in all three states. The sale is expected to close by the end of the year.
More on that Alexandria daycare center that was shut down by the state this week. The Department of Education shut the doors at Jumpin’ Jacks Development Center after receiving several reports of children escaping or nearly escaping the facility. DOE Spokesperson Sydni Dunn says a complaint from a parent in December was the final straw. Dunn says the center failed to report 55 incidents of non-compliance over the last two years. There were lesser violations, but the amount of them served sent up a lot of red flags. Providers who have had their licenses revoked are ineligible to apply for another license for two years from the date of the revocation.
The TOPS task force formed five months ago to find a long term solution to funding the scholarship program has decided against endorsing a single position, and instead is submitting a series of proposals for the legislature to consider. Jennings Senator Blade Morrish says he hopes the results will help legislators when voting on potential changes to TOPS in the upcoming regular session.
24-7 sports ranks LSU’s recruiting class as 15th best in the nation. The worst ranking for LSU since 2005, which was Les Miles first class. Tiger Rag Associate Editor James Moran says Orgeron’s staff did well in adding depth to the offensive and defensive lines, but signed just one five-star prospect Wednesday.
Governor John Bel Edwards says FEMA has agreed to his request to help ease the financial burden of flood survivors living in Temporary Housing Units. Starting March 1st, rent for the units will be reduced to $50.00 a month which will last through the new deadline of May 14th when the program is scheduled to end. Edwards says he will continue to request extensions as needed.
The Coast Guard rescued four people from the Lower Atchafalaya River south of Patterson yesterday after an emergency landing of a twin-engine plane. Petty Officer Lora Ratliff says the pilot made a valiant effort trying to avoid the emergency landing, but realized he couldn’t make it to an airstrip. One person suffered a minor injury.
The 5th US Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans is considering whether or not a 2016 Louisiana law that would ban women under 21 from dancing naked at strip clubs is too broad in its application. Opponents are concerned that the law was so vaguely written that it could outlaw 18, 19, and 20-year-olds from some theatrical or ballet productions that involve nudity. Proponents argue that the law protects young women from sex trafficking. The court has not indicated which way it is leaning.
A biologist at LSU is working to develop biodegradedable beads in a push to stop the environmental damage that occurs after millions of pounds of beads end up in landfills every year. His solution involves growing large ponds of algae that will develop oils that can be refined into degradedable material. Four to five million pounds of beads are thrown every carnival season.
Once every few years, holidays important to Louisianans fall in the same week. This year, Mardi Gras will be Tuesday, February 13th and Valentine’s Day will fall on the next day. It may prove to be interesting for restaurants to get couples to eat out on the second most popular holiday. Erika Burns with the Louisiana Restaurant Association says if you are considering taking your sweetheart out for dinner Wednesday, it’s best to make sure you have a reservation so you’re not left out.