News for Wednesday 060519
Compiled by Dave Graichen
A flash flood watch is in effect for southwest Louisiana, central Louisiana, and Acadiana as the state is expected to see steady rains over the next several days. State Climatologist Barry Keim says a trough has formed along the coast, and is expected to bring rains across the entire state. Keim says after two weeks of some incredibly dry weather, our fortunes are expected to change starting today. Some areas of the state could see 2 to 4 inches of rain.
Also, A tropical disturbance is working its way up the Mexican Gulf Coast , and there’s a 40 percent chance the disturbance could develop into Tropical Storm Barry. If you’re worried the deluge could exacerbate the ongoing flood risk on the Mississippi River, Keim says don’t worry about it, because the water we’re about to get won’t be getting into that waterway. Keim adds the water putting south Louisiana levees at risk is flowing in from the north.
Colorado State University hurricane researchers are predicting a near-average Atlantic hurricane season in 2019, which is only a slight increase from the initial forecast issued in early April. The research team calls for 13 named storms this season. Researcher Jhordanne Jones says conditions in the Pacific could impact the Atlantic season.
Jones says what causes the season to be average is the uncertainty of the Pacific to continue to warm up.
KALB TV reports Roger Boggs, the former CEO of Revolution Aluminum (formerly American Specialty Alloys), who was supposed to bring a $1.5 billion aluminum plant to Pineville back in 2015, has been declared "indigent" by the 9th Judicial District Public Defender's Office. Boggs is charged with bank fraud for allegedly defrauding Red River Bank, and most recently, a charge of issuing worthless checks over $25,000.
President Trump approves the state’s request for federal assistance to help rebuild public property and infrastructure from the EF-3 tornado that hit Ruston in April. Ruston Mayor Ronny Walker says over five-hundred structures were damaged in Ruston and about one-hundred of them were totaled. He says the other issue they are dealing with his fraudulent contractors. Walker says most of their expenses are from repairing the city’s electrical grid and fiber system, plus debris removal.
A bill that would direct 700 million dollars in BP oil spill settlement money to road projects gains final passage. Houma Representative Tanner Magee says the money will find its way to every corner of the state, and target projects with the greatest economic impacts. Magee says when federal matching dollars are accounted for, the total investment could top a billion dollars. One of the roads that will benefit locally is Sugarhouse Road in Alexandria. That project has been stalled for years.
Legislation to ban the handheld use of cellphones while behind the wheel is dead for the session. This is the second year Breaux Bridge Representative Mike Huval has pursued the measure. Huval says the bill has built momentum, but met its fate when Senator Regina Barrow changed her vote, now moving to defer the bill, which had no objection. Huval says he will continue with the efforts next year.
An attempt to pull a bill out of House Appropriations that would have paved the way for sports betting legalization failed in the House on a 41 to 48 vote, but it’s not the end of the line for the increasingly controversial topic. The House will take up a vote on a combined fantasy sports/sports betting bill today. If that legislation fails to get the votes, it will head into a conference committee with a looming 6pm Thursday deadline for the session approaching.
The state legislature has given final approval to a bill that will create a new crime of harassment of a school or recreation athletic contest official. If someone is found guilty of threatening or injuring an official, he or she could receive up to 90 days in jail, along with mandatory counseling and community service work.
Senator John Kennedy says he’s got legislation that would address the raw deals smaller news media outlets are getting from social media giants who use their content. Kennedy wants to empower small media outlets by temporarily suspending antitrust laws for them. He says this would allow them to collectively negotiate for more profit sharing from companies that use their content.
Final legislative approval came on Monday for a measure to give a pay raise of $1000 to teachers, $500 to school support workers, and $39 million in block grant funding for school districts. President of the Louisiana Association of Educators Debbie Meaux says while it is a modest amount, teachers are ecstatic that lawmakers recognize the importance of the raise. The legislative instrument results in a $140 million increase to annual school spending.
LSU’s Super Regional Series against Florida State will begin Saturday at 2 PM at Alex Box Stadium. Game Two will be at 5 o’ clock on Sunday and if the third game is needed, it will be played on Monday night at 7:30.
The Pelicans are reportedly listening to trade offers for disgruntled superstar Anthony Davis. Newly hired Pelicans executive David Griffin reportedly met with Davis and his agent, Rich Paul, last week to see if the six-time All-Star had a change of heart and wanted to stay in New Orleans. But there have been reports that Davis is still seeking a trade, even though the Pels own the top overall pick in the draft.
Saints quarterback Drew Brees was not at Tuesday’s session of organized team activities because he was reportedly in San Diego dealing with a lawsuit. Court records indicate that Brees and his wife are suing a San Diego-based jeweler. It gave backup Teddy Bridgewater a chance to run the first team offense.
LSU teammates Zack Hess and Todd Peterson were both taken in 7th round of MLB Draft Monday night.
The Independence Bowl is reportedly losing its tie-in with the SEC. Starting in 2020 the annual football game in Shreveport will have teams from the ACC and PAC-12 play in the bowl game. In 2020, 2022 and 2024 the SEC will have teams playing in the Las Vegas Bowl and the Gasprilla Bowl in Tampa.
On air tonight..
Game 3 of the NBA Playoffs with Toronto @ Golden State airtime 7p 94.7 ESPN