News for Wednesday 091819
Compiled by Dave Graichen
An area of showers and storms in the Gulf of Mexico fired up rapidly Tuesday. When it went from a 30% chance of development, to a 50% chance of development, to Tropical Depression Eleven, then Tropical Storm Imelda, followed quickly by Imelda making landfall near Freeport, Texas all of that in just a few hours. The storm has now been downgraded to a depression, but will still bring heavy rains across Texas over the next 24 to 48 hours. The heaviest rain should stay well to the west of Cenla.
Legendary political reporter and New Orleans native Cokie Roberts has passed away at the age of 75. Roberts was named one of the 50 greatest women in broadcasting history. Roberts was highly respected for her political coverage in radio, at PBS, CBS News, and ABC News. She passed away from complications resulting from breast cancer.
Following an examination by two specialists, Saints quarterback Drew Brees’ passing hand is undergoing surgery today in Los Angeles. The timetable for a return will not be known until after the surgery is complete. Brees tore a ligament in his right thumb during Sunday’s loss to the Rams.
The RPSO has arrested 60 year old Kathy Lynn Walker of Alexandria after an audit at her employer showed over $70,000 has been misappropriated. Deputies say Walker issued herself additional pay checks without her employer’s permission. Walker was taken into custody without incident and booked into the Rapides Parish Detention Center on the active warrants. She was released later that day on a $1,000 bond.
Though it appears now there was no credible threat, administrators played it safe and locked down Ruby Wise Elementary School yesterday following reports of a suspicious vehicle parked near the school. The RPSO responded around 10:00 a.m .but Detectives were unable to locate neither the person in question nor any credible threats.
Outside of the hotly contested governor’s race, Louisiana politicos are keeping a close eye on the legislative contests to see whether Republicans can get a 70-seat supermajority in the House. LSU Assistant Professor of Political Communication Mike Henderson says the state’s gradual deep redshift gives Republicans a solid opportunity to have the votes to override vetoes in the House. The winner of the 2019 races will be in the driver’s seat for 2021 redistricting.
Governor Edwards and GOP candidate Eddie Rispone have produced conflicting campaign ads focusing on the current administration’s handling of criminal justice reform. Rispone’s ad paints a picture of bad criminals now free due to the reform.
Rispone’s ad says between the sanctuary city status of New Orleans and criminals not serving whole sentences, Louisiana is a hub of lawlessness. Edwards’ ad says accusations that his criminal justice reform legislation is bad for the state not true and uses several law enforcement professionals to make the case.
The Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame has announced its 2020 induction class and the headliner is Alabama coach Nick Saban. The former LSU football coach won 75-percent of his games and the 2003 national championship during five seasons in Baton Rouge. Louisiana Sports Hall of Fame Chairman Doug Ireland says Saban’s impact on LSU football is immense. Two former NFL pro-bowlers are being inducted as well. Former Ragin Cajun and Chicago Bear Charles Tillman and former Saints superstar wide receiver Joe Horn will receive the honor.
Gasoline prices are on the rise following attacks on Saudi Arabian oil facilities. The current statewide average for a gallon of regular gasoline is $2.22, about a nickel higher than last week. AAA fuel analyst Don Redman says he expects the prices to continue to rise.
China purchases 67 million dollars’ worth of US soybeans and exempts the product from a new set of tariffs set to take effect this month as a sign of goodwill in ongoing trade negotiations. Louisiana Soybean Grain Research and Promotion Board Chairman Charles Canatella says it’s great news for one of the state’s biggest crops. In exchange, the US will delay the onset of a new set of tariffs on China until October 15th.
A St. Landry Parish father says he's furious after his son suffered a concussion at school. It happened during PE class at Lawtell Elementary School. That father claims his son didn't get medical attention fast enough and he now wants procedures to change. Wilbert Brown says when he arrived at the school he was told his son was sick from the heat. Brown says the were pouring water on his son, who was sitting in a daze and covered with vomit. Brown says his son had been hit with a football and had a huge bruise on the side of his head. An ambulance was called; the boy is expected to make a complete recovery.
Employment in energy efficiency here in Louisiana is up 6.3% from 2017 to 2018, much faster than the national average growth rate of 3.4%. Policy Director at E for the Future Pat Stanton says those jobs range over various sectors such as construction, manufacturing, and services to track and lower energy consumption. Stanton says there are various perks to energy efficiency, but the one that gets lots of attention are the monetary savings.
Opelousas Police have arrested four people in connection to a drive-by shooting that left a 15-year-old hospitalized in critical condition. Three Opelousas High school students and one adult are facing attempted first degree murder, attempted assault by drive-by and violation of a fire arm free zone charges in connection with the Sunday morning shooting.