News for Friday 070116
By Dave Graichen
Times are tough everywhere. Even in the church. With less money in the collection plate, fewer charitable donations and ever-increasing expenses, The Catholic Diocese of Alexandria has announced its eliminating 13 positions, including three clergy positions, at St. Joseph Catholic Center. Bishop Ronald Herzog said in a letter about the staff reductions, this coming year’s deficit is approaching $500,000,”
Pineville Mayor Clarence Fields saying yesterday during a public meeting on the city’s budget that the city is sound financially, but it cannot continue dipping into reserve funds. The City Council unanimously approved the amended 2015-16 budget and the 2016-17 budget. The new fiscal year which starts today. The budget was amended to accommodate the city paying the IRS over $244 thousand for missed Social Security payments for firefighters. City officials actually are relieved that they could settle the debt for that amount, since the city was facing a potential $2.36 million debt.
The state’s newly expanded Medicaid program goes into effect today, and the Louisiana Department of Health says some people may be able to see a doctor for the first time in their lives. Secretary Rebekah Gee says the expansion will improve health outcomes for Louisiana residents.
Two arrests have been made in the murder of the Raising Cane’s shift manager who was killed during an armed robbery. 23-year-old Joshua Every and 24-year-old Mark Crocklen are both charged with armed robbery and first degree murder for the death of 21-year-old Taylor Friloux. Kenner Police Chief Michael Glaser says the suspects are going back and forth about who stabbed the girl, but the video clearly shows what happened. Police say this was a planned robbery, and only $1,000 was stolen.
Beginning today, able-bodied food stamp recipients without dependents will be required to participate in job-training if they do not work or go to school. DCFS Deputy Assistant Secretary, Sammy Guillory, says the requirement could be different on a case by case basis.
Guillory says this new requirement will affect about 52-thousand food stamp recipients.
Cuts will still need to be made on government services as the new fiscal year starts, but the concern is that there will be a deficit in the current year that would carry over Rob Henson with the State Treasurer’s Office says even with the work that the legislature did in the two special sessions, there are still major money problems ahead.
The Revenue Estimating Conference learned Thursday that lawmakers raised $371 million dollars in revenue that can be used in the budget year that begins Friday. But Ron Henson with the State Treasurer’s Office says there are still concerns that Louisiana won’t be able to pay its bills until taxes are collected and it’s possible state government will have to borrow money.
A motion has been filed to allow a jury to hear a secret recording of Iberia Parish Sheriff Louis Ackal calling a federal prosecutor in a pending case a “sorry son of a b****”. Legal analyst Tim Meche says Ackal did not know he was being recorded. Ackal also allegedly made anti-Semitic remarks about the prosecutor
Two 18th District judges have been suspended without pay, due to misconduct. Judge Robin Free and Judge James Best’s region covers Iberville, Pointe Coupee and West Baton Rouge parishes. Judge Alvin Batiste, who also handles cases in that district, says anytime a judge is punished, it is serious. The Supreme Court suspended Free for a year, and Best was suspended 15 days.
Summer is upon us and many people will be out enjoying the water, so the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries is giving out some tips on what to do in the event of an alligator encounter. LDWF Alligator Program Manager Edmond Mouton says whatever you do, don’t feed or approach alligators. He says if you see an alligator in an area that could pose a public safety hazard, call LDWF immediately because state law prohibits taking it into your own hands. Mouton advises Louisiana residents to visit LA-gator-program-dot-com
One man is dead following an officer-involved shooting in Monroe. State Trooper Michael Reichardt says deputies were following up on a domestic violence call when the suspect pointed a weapon at them, so they fired. Reichardt says the deputies were not harmed, and the investigation is ongoing.