News for Wednesday 080515
By Dave Graichen
Governor Bobby Jindal will not participate in a primetime republican presidential debate on Thursday. The governor failed to poll high enough in five recent national polls to be one of the ten candidates to appear in the Fox News debate. Jindal will have the opportunity to take part in a debate of second tier candidates, which will take place Thursday afternoon in Cleveland. National polls have the governor only getting one to two percent of the vote.
The RPSO reports a DeRidder man sought in both the Grant and Rapides parishes was apprehended Monday night in Pineville after a search that spanned into Texas. Rickey Lee Cooley Jr. was booked into the Rapides Parish Detention Center and was charged with making harassing phone calls, simple assault, felony stalking and being a Louisiana fugitive on the Grant Parish warrants. Cooley is being held on a $150,000 bond.
The Red River Waterway Commission last week started the process of reopening public boat ramps on the Red River in Natchitoches, Grant, Rapides and Avoyelles parishes now that water levels have started to recede. The ramps were closed because of flooding in June and July. Boaters still should use caution when launching into the current and be highly aware of obstacles such as trees and sandbars while navigating the river.
The price of US crude oil has fallen to its lowest price in four months and it is having a negative impact on economies in Louisiana. The current price for a barrel of US crude is just $45 a barrel, down from $61 a barrel on June 10th. LSU economist Dr. Loren Scott says the drop in price has caused job loss in communities heavily tied to oil and gas, like Lafayette and Houma.
As oil prices continue to plummet, some of the best paying jobs in the state are lost. He says job losses are spread throughout the oil and gas industry, from supply boats to helicopters to the drilling rigs themselves. He says the number of working rigs has dropped by nearly half of what they were a year ago.
Common Core standards see another school year kicking off this week and next in Louisiana. The department of education has a portal on its website that’s taking public comment on Common Core and a hearing is set for August 19th. The president of the Louisiana Association of School Superintendents, Hollis Milton, would like to see the PARCC test go saying he believes the Aspire exams are a better standardized test for third through eighth graders.
He adds he doesn’t want to see major changes to Common Core.
The Colorado State University forecast team puts out its updated forecast for the 2015 hurricane season and it looks the same as the one released at the start of the season. The report is still predicting eight named storms, much less than an average season. A strong El Nino in the Pacific Ocean is one reason they cite.
St. Bernard Parish President Dave Peralta was indicted by a grand jury Tuesday on 22 counts which include malfeasance, extortion, obstruction and more. Peralta is accused of using parish employees to help him stalk his ex-wife and other offenses. He is charged with crimes in two other jurisdictions.
The ACLU of Louisiana has released a report on incarcerating the poor and it indicates there’s a common, unlawful practice of jailing people who don’t have enough money to pay court-ordered fines. Executive Director Marjorie Esman says this practice often sends financially stressed individuals into a downward cycle of incarceration. She says in 1983 the US Supreme Court ruled that judges must hold hearings to determine someone’s ability to pay before assessing a fine.
Researchers have determined the size of the “Dead Zone” in the Gulf of Mexico is nearly 17-thousand square kilometers, which is the size of Connecticut and Rhode Island combined. Louisiana Universities Marine Consortium executive director Nancy Rabalais says the dead zone is bigger than anticipated, because more fresh water and nutrients flowed out of the Mississippi River basin than anticipated. The dead zone is an area of low oxygen in the Gulf, where sea animals are unable to live. She says it’s 28-percent larger than in 2014
The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office says they’ve arrested a man who is accused of raping a store clerk late Monday night. The cashier was in the store by herself and investigators believe 26-year-old James Domingue of Sulphur coaxed her into the back where he beat and raped her. He was located a few hours later and charged with rape, kidnapping, and false imprisonment.
The 42nd Annual Bayou Classic will air on the NBC Sports Network on Saturday November 28th. The game will once again be played in the Mercedes Benz Superdome and kickoff at 4pm. The NBC Sports Group has been the home of The Bayou Classic since 1991.
The LSU football team reports for fall camp today looking to improve on an eight-win season from a year ago. Tiger Rag Associate Editor James Moran says quarterback is once again a question mark for the Tigers, but whether it’s Anthony Jennings or Brandon Harris, the offense should be better than last year.. Moran believes LSU can win at least ten games this year.