News for Monday 112315
By Dave Graichen
A state representative from Amite is the next governor of Louisiana. John Bel Edwards defeated Republican David Vitter by double digits, becoming the first Democrat to win a statewide election since 2008. How quickly elections can change. About a month ago, Vitter was the odds on favorite to be the next governor of Louisiana. The then two gubernatorial candidates had asked legislators to reject the plan.
Republican Senator David Vitter has decided to not seek re-election to the US Senate next year. Vitter made the announcement during his gubernatorial election concession speech Saturday night. Vitter said when he decided to run for governor, he wanted to pursue challenges outside the Senate, no matter the outcome of this election. Vitter said he had reached his personal term limit in the Senate.
Two-term Republican incumbent Buddy Caldwell was defeated in the Attorney General’s race as fellow Republican and former Congressman Jeff Landry won by 12-percentage points. Caldwell says he’s proud of the work he’s done as the state’s top lawyer. Landry says he’s thankful for the support he’s received and now plans to bring honor and integrity to the Attorney General’s office.
Rapides Parish voters approved a parish wide senior citizens tax on Saturday, along with three district taxes. Voter turnout, only 28.8 percent.
The joint legislative budget committee approves Governor Bobby Jindal’s proposal to close a 487-million dollar budget deficit. The plan calls for cuts to state agencies, patchwork financing and tapping into the rainy day fund. Senate president John Alario says it’s not a perfect plan, but it puts something in place until a new governor takes over in January.
Louisiana’s unemployment rate rose slightly to six-point-two percent in October based on figures from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics. However, that’s lower than last October when the unemployment rate was seven-percent. The Louisiana Workforce Commission says the civilian labor force lost nearly 12-thousand workers from September to October. The two main factors, low oil prices and a decline of government workers.
NOPD reporting at least 16 people were hospitalized in New Orleans Sunday evening, following a shooting during a party at a city park. The shooting broke out at Bunny Friend Park in the Upper Ninth Ward where about 500 people were gathered at the playground for the impromptu shooting of a music video. The victims were all in stable condition.
According to the personal finance website, Kiplinger, Louisiana ranks fourth for best state to live in for low taxes and it’s also eighth for retirees. Kiplinger Senior Associate Editor Sandra Block says the Pelican State has a variety of tax friendly policies. Plus, Block says Louisiana’s income tax is also one of the lowest in the US.
The Louisiana Highway Safety Commission has kicked off their Thanksgiving holiday Click it or Ticket campaign. State Police Trooper Michael Reichardt says nobody wants to remember the holidays tragically and buckling up has been proven to save lives. He says in addition to checking for seatbelt violations, troopers will also be on the lookout for motorists drinking and driving. Reichardt says there will be increased patrols through November 29th.
The President of the University of Louisiana System is stepping down. Sandra Woodley gave no explanation for her resignation. In a released statement, Woodley says she is proud of what the system has been able to accomplish during her presidency which began in January of 2013. Woodley will leave her post at the end of the year. She will remain on board to serve in a transitional capacity through March 31st.
A man from Denham Springs will spend the rest of his life behind bars for shooting up his fiancee with a lethal dose of heroin. 26-year-old Jarret McCasland was found guilty of second-degree murder. East Baton Rouge DA Hillar Moore says evidence against McCasland was overwhelming and the jury didn’t take long to return a verdict. 19-year-old Flavia Cardenas died of a heroin overdose in July of 2013
Is Les Miles getting ready to coach his last game in Tiger Stadium? It’s a possibility after the Tigers suffered their third straight loss in an embarrassing 38-17 defeat to Ole Miss. Coach Les Miles says his job status didn’t affect his players’ performance. This is the first time LSU has lost three straight games with Miles as the coach. A published report in the Advocate last week said Miles was coaching for his job after suffering losses to Alabama and Arkansas. The head coach says he doesn’t know if he’s in danger of losing his job.