News for Friday 102414
By Dave Graichen
Rapides Parish and the city of Alexandria appear headed to court over the Rapides Coliseum property. The Police Jury filed suit Thursday to force the city to allow its half of their jointly owned portion of the property to be used for parking, or to partition the property. The two sides have said for months they intended to pursue a sale agreement, but little progress has been made. The jointly owned portion of the property became an issue when the parish moved forward with plans for a $23 million renovation to the coliseum. For the project to receive permitting, designers have to show the design contains enough parking spaces to meet city code requirements. To do that, the parish must secure ownership to the city’s portion of the property or an agreement with the city to use it, or else find additional parking elsewhere.
The Louisiana Office of Motor Vehicles is testing a program that could help seniors renew their licenses and register vehicles without the long wait times they may currently face. “Senior Day” will be tested at select locations throughout the state, one Saturday a month beginning next month, as a time for only Louisianans older than age 60 to head to local OMV offices. Here in Cenla, the DMV office on Coliseum Blvd will participate.
The RPSO reports a Jena woman faces a charge of filing a false police report that accused a man of rape. The office got a report Saturday night from a local hospital’s emergency room, which said there was a possible rape victim seeking treatment. A deputy spoke with the woman, Mary Taylor of Jena, who claimed that a man had raped her in a wooded area off Twin Bridges Road. After a second interview though, Taylor recanted her story, after which she was arrested and was booked into the Rapides Parish Detention Center.
20 year old Colan Tyler of Colfax has been arrested after he allegedly attempted to sell an undercover Grant Parish Sheriff's deputy fake meth. Tyler was charged with distribution of a counterfeit controlled dangerous substance II and obstruction of justice.
Out of the 2.9 million voters who are registered for the November 4th election, there are about 1.8 million white voters, which could be a problem for incumbent Democratic Senator Mary Landrieu according to political analyst Bernie Pinsonat. He says there are about 919 thousand registered black voters, plus about 93 thousand more independent voters than there were 6 years ago.
We’re now about halfway through the early voting period for the November 4th election and Secretary Of State Tom Schedler says there’s been good participation among voters. He says so far the number of early votes is at 75% of what the state saw two years ago for the Presidential election. Scheduler says overall participation looks good.
The voting locations will be closed on Sunday and the last day to early vote will be Tuesday.
State health officials are monitoring a New Orleans area man for signs of the deadly Ebola virus. The federal Centers for Disease Control alerted the state to the individual who had just returned from a visit to an Ebola affected country. According to the feds, the individual is at low risk for Ebola, but they are monitoring him just to be on the safe side. The man, who is voluntarily staying at home will be monitored until Nov. 5. So far, he has no symptoms.
We are now one year away from the gubernatorial primary election in Louisiana. Republicans Senator David Vitter, Public Service Commissioner Scott Angelle, and Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne, as well as Democrat State Representative John Bel Edwards have announced their intent to run for Governor. UL-Lafayette Political Science Professor Pearson Cross says, the biggest question mark at this point in the Governor’s race is whether or not Democrat New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu will join the field. Cross says Landrieu will probably wait until after the holiday season to make up his mind. Cross says you should really see the gubernatorial race kick off after Mardi Gras…
Kenny Henderson is out as executive director of the Louisiana High School Athletic Association. Henderson led the L-H-S-A-A, which governs high school athletics, since 2007. His contract was set to expire next summer, but past-president of the LHSAA, Todd Guice, says both sides felt now was the time for a change. Guice would not say why Henderson will not fill out the remainder of his contract. The search for Henderson’s replacement has already started.
The Rapides Parish Sheriff’s office says a 67-year-old man from Boyce is booked on 3rd offense DWI after cops believe he was driving drunk on his lawnmower. They say Ralph Rufus Carroll was traveling in the middle of the highway and tried to dodge an officer by driving his lawnmower into the woods. Carroll was apprehended at his home and arrested for driving under the influence for the third time.
The 108th Annual State Fair of Louisiana opens today in Shreveport and organizers are thrilled with this great weather. Besides lots of live entertainment, there’s rides, games, and some fun things for the kids. The fair will run through November 9th, except Mondays and Tuesdays.