News for Wednesday February 5th, 2020
Compiled by Dave Graichen
The LSU Alexandria Foundation receives a $460,000 contribution from six community partners to fund the expansion of the nursing program. Foundation director Melinda Anderson says this helps combat the nursing shortage in CENLA. The money will fund scholarships as well as the salary and benefits of an additional faculty member over the next four years. LSUA and the Department of Nursing has a high year to year passing rate of around 94 percent.
The City of Alexandria is asking for request for proposals (RFP) to revamp the old Weiss & Goldring building downtown, but with specific parameters. The city said a mixed-use of the facility is preferable over single-use. If it is mixed-use, the city said they'd prefer housing over retail and business office mixes. The city also said they'd consider educational use, full retail grocery space since the area is considered a food desert as well as a destination site like a museum. The city will be taking RFPs until April 30th.
Baton Rouge Democrat Ted James is named Criminal Justice Committee Chairman, and plans to approach incarceration reform, marijuana, and capital punishment with a focus on their fiscal impact. The bipartisan criminal justice reform of 2017 significantly reduced the state’s prison population, but James says he will guide the committee towards further reductions. Louisiana retook the title of the nation’s highest per capita incarcerator last year after briefly dropping to 49th following the 2017 criminal justice reform.
In the State Of The Union address last night President Trump highlighted two bills by Senator Bill Cassidy, one focusing on parental leave and the other targeting surprise medical billing. Cassidy’s family leave bill would allow parents to receive a larger child tax credit in their child’s first year after birth or adoption. The legislation would be paid for by drawing from parent’s future child tax credits.
A final removal vote in the Senate impeachment trial of President Trump is set for today, and Senator Bill Cassidy says he will vote against removing the Commander in Chief. Polls show a near dead even split on public opinion related to impeachment and removal, and Cassidy says you can’t undo an election without a strong consensus.
The City of New Orleans is facing a tab of $11-million for the partial collapse of the Hard Rock Hotel. A planned implosion for the construction site is set for mid to late March.
A new, potentially lethal drug has been discovered in a St. Mary Parish traffic stop. It’s called “gray death” and it is heroin cut with fentanyl and can be deadly to the touch. St. Mary Parish Sheriff’s spokesperson David Spencer says this drug is fairly new, first popping up around Georgia and Alabama in 2017. He says it looks like concrete or limestone.
The 18th ranked LSU men’s basketball team looks to extend its winning streak to eleven games tonight and improve to 9-0 in the SEC when they visit Vanderbilt. Tip off tonight is at 8. Airtime 7:30p on KSYL 970 AM / 104.9 FM
LSU football looks to put the finishing touches on its best recruiting class in more than a decade as today begins the second national signing period for the 2020 class .