News for Wednesday 032713
By Dave Graichen
A town hall meeting last night in Pineville drew the line for those against and those for the sale of alcohol in the city. Mayor Fields told the crowd, the purpose of the meeting was to get public input on the city potentially moving forward with a process that could result in allowing restaurants in Pineville to serve alcohol. The council would need approval from the state legislature to call for an election on that issue.
The LSU Board of Supervisors will recommend F. King Alexander today to be the next President of the state's flagship university. During a meeting with the media last week, the Cal State Long Beach president said he's excited about helping higher education thrive in Louisiana. LSU's resources have been spread thin, but Alexander has made clear he plans to work with the state to increase the University's status as a necessary asset in Louisiana.
A non-partisan think tank releases its study, saying Governor Jindal's tax reform proposal will benefit Louisiana's economy. Kevin Kane is President of the Pelican Institute for Public Policy. He says they examined the economic impacts of the tax swap, and predict a positive effect on individuals and businesses. Kane says the study finds the tax swap would enable business to create over 10-thousand new jobs in Louisiana by 2017, and would boost corporate investment in the state by $183-million. Download the full study report at "pelicaninstitute.org"
Tim Barfield, executive counsel for the Department of Revenue said yesterday Gov. Bobby Jindal’s tax restructuring plan would shift $500 million in tax costs from individuals to businesses. Barfield went on to say though business tax costs would grow, the governor’s plan would benefit companies by giving them increased stability and simplicity.
New York Mayor and gun control advocate Michael Bloomberg is paying for TV ads that attempt to convince Senator Mary Landrieu and 14 of her Senate colleagues to vote for legislation that would require background checks of gun purchases. The 12-million dollar ad campaign will run during the two-week congressional Easter-Passover recess.
State Superintendent of Education John White says he wants to consider eliminating one of Louisiana’s three high school diplomas. The move is driven in part by a new push to aid students who want to pursue a career after high school rather than seeking a four-year college degree. The diplomas offered now are: Core 4, which is the college preparatory curriculum. Career, which is supposed to prepare students for jobs or community or technical colleges. Basic, which is aimed at getting students ready for community or technical college and is less rigorous than Core 4. White told the Superintendents’ Advisory Council last week that the system is flawed and that the state should consider issuing only two diplomas — college and career. Superintendents generally praised the concept, and several said they would back pilot projects.
Recent colder-than-normal temperatures will have an impact on crawfish availability for the busy Easter weekend. That's according to David Savoy, president of the Louisiana Crawfish Farmer's Association, who says the supply of mudbugs will not meet the demand. Savoy says the recent cold snap an earlier Easter and a less than average supply to start with are the main reason for the shortage.
A group has formed to help Louisiana residents understand the changes that will take place as a result of the new federal healthcare law. It's called the Louisiana Healthcare Education Coalition. Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana CEO Mike Reitz says more people will be required to buy their own insurance and that could be a daunting task for some. Under the new federal health care law, people who are unable to get insurance through their employer or other means will be required to buy coverage through a health insurance marketplace set up by the government. Open enrollment for the health insurance marketplace begins in October with coverage to begin in 2014.
The Louisiana Department of Corrections says a fugitive who's been on the run since January 1st has been captured. Authorities say 33-year-old Keana Barnes gave Los Angeles Police a fake name as she was being given a ticket for loitering outside of a
business there and the officer became suspicious. Barnes was serving a 25-year-sentence on 2 counts of manslaughter.
Police in the Acadiana area are actively searching for a Youngsville man who walked out of his vehicular homicide trial yesterday and didn't come back. They say 43-year-old Wade Lohse told the prosecutor he needed to put more money in a parking meter at the courthouse then never came back. He is accused in a drunk driving death that happened last year and is facing several other felony charges.
25 more trees have been swallowed by the Bayou Corne sinkhole. The most recent slough-in was on the hole's southeastern side. Seismic sensors detected tremors last Friday and water movement within the muddy slurry that fills the hole. Texas Brine, the company who owns the underground salt cavern beneath the sinkhole, is in the process of buying out homeowners nearby, who've been evacuated for over 7
State Agricultural Commissioner Mike Strain says his office is monitoring the unseasonably cold weather to make sure that it will not have an impact on Louisiana's crops. He says freezing temperatures throughout the state may have some slight effect on corn, tomatoes and peppers. However, weather will begin warming up this weekend and Strain says will be a good time to plant your vegetable garden.
The No. 6 seed Lady Tigers – with just seven healthy players – upset No. 3 seed and healthy Penn State 71-66 at the Pete Maravich Assembly Center Tuesday night to get beyond the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2008. LSU (22-11) will meet California (29-3) in the Sweet 16 on Saturday in Spokane, Wash.
Lsu baseball last night.. the tigers defeated Tulane 14 to 1in 8 innings.. The boys travel to Missouri for a three game series starting this Friday.