KSYL Local News

News For Tuesday 071211


NEWS FOR TUESDAY 071211
BY DAVE GRAICHEN

AAA SAYS GAS PRICES HAVE SHOT UP AN AVERAGE OF 12 CENTS IN THE LAST WEEK. AAA FUEL ANALYST DON REDMAN THE MARKET MIGHT STABILIZE SOON. REDMAN BELIEVES THE STATE WIDE AVERAGES WILL STAY BETWEEN 3.50 AND 3.75 FOR THE REMAINDER OF THE SUMMER. HE SAYS, HOWEVER, THIS COULD CHANGE IF A HURRICANE ENTERS THE GULF OF MEXICO.

A STATE UTILITY REGULATOR SAYS A RULE IS KICKING IN THAT PREVENTS ELECTRIC UTILITIES FROM CUTTING OFF CUSTOMERS WHEN THE HEAT INDEX IS AT LEAST 105 DEGREES. PSC MEMBER FOSTER CAMPBELL SAYS HEAT INDEXES OF 105 TO 110 DEGREES ARE EXPECTED ACROSS MUCH OF THE STATE THROUGH THE WEEKEND. CAMPBELL SAYS THE 2007 PSC RULE REQUIRES CUSTOMERS EXTRA TIME TO BRING THEIR ACCOUNTS CURRENT.

LEST YOU FORGET, WE ARE AT WAR, OUR THOUGHTS AND PRAYERS ARE GOING OUT OT THE FAMILY OF 23-YEAR-OLD ARMY SERGEANT CHRISTOPHER SODERLUND, OF PINEVILLE. THE DEFENSE DEPARTMENT SAYING MONDAY THAT SODERLUND HAD DIED JULY 9. IN AFGHANISTAN. HE WAS WOUNDED WHEN HIS VEHICLE WAS ATTACKED BY ROCKET-PROPELLED GRENADE FIRE. CHRISTOPHER SODERLUND WAS ASSIGNED TO 2ND BATTALION, 30TH INFANTRY REGIMENT, 4TH BRIGADE COMBAT TEAM, 10TH MOUNTAIN DIVISION FROM FORT POLK.

A THE CITY OF ALEXANDRIA’S PLANS FOR THE DOWNTOWN HOTELS CONTINUES TO UNRAVEL, THE CITY ANNOUNCED YESTERDAY, NOBLE HOSPITALITY INC. WILL ASSUME DAILY CONTROL OF OPERATIONS OF THE ALEXANDER FULTON HOTEL ON FRIDAY. NOBLE PREVIOUSLY HAD MANAGED THE BANKRUPT HOTEL FROM SEPTEMBER 2009 UNTIL JULY 2010 AS CITY OFFICIALS TRANSITIONED INTO THE DOWNTOWN HOTELS INITIATIVE WITH HOSPITALITY INITIATIVES PARTNERSHIP TAKING CONTROL OF THE HOTEL. MAYOR ROY ANNOUNCED YESTERDAY THE CITY ISN'T PAYING NOBLE ANY MANAGEMENT FEES, UNLIKE THE $9,000 PER MONTH AND $10,000 RETAINER FEE PAID TO THE COMPANY THE LAST TIME IT RAN THE HOTEL. INSTEAD, NOBLE WILL SHARE PROFITS WITH THE CITY, WHILE ALSO ASSUMING ALL OF THE OPERATIONAL EXPENSES. HOWEVER, THE CITY WILL PAY FOR ANY CAPITAL IMPROVEMENTS AT THE HOTEL.

THE RAPIDES PARISH POLICE JURY VOTED MONDAY TO ALLOW CLECO TO CONTINUE OPERATING IN THE PARISH WITHOUT A FRANCHISE FEE FOR AN ADDITIONAL FIVE YEARS.
CLECO'S FRANCHISE AGREEMENT, WHICH WOULD HAVE EXPIRED IN NOVEMBER, INCLUDES NO FRANCHISE FEE. TYPICALLY, NEW FRANCHISES OR RENEWALS IN THE PARISH CARRY A 4 PERCENT FRANCHISE FEE, WHICH JURORS FELT WOULD HAVE BEEN PASSED ON TO CUSTOMERS.

VERNON PARISH SHERIFF'S DEPUTIES SAY A 2-YEAR-OLD LEESVILLE BOY HAS DROWNED AT THE VERNON LAKE SPILLWAY PARK. AUTHORITIES ANSWERED A DISTRESS CALL LATE SUNDAY ABOUT THE CHILD, WHO WAS MISSING FROM THE LEESVILLE-AREA PARK. DAMARION BRYANT WAS DISCOVERED IN THE WATER CLOSE TO WHERE HE HAD BEEN PLAYING WITH OTHER CHILDREN. THE CHILD WAS PRONOUNCED DEAD AT A LEESVILLE HOSPITAL.

GOV. BOBBY JINDAL SAYS THE STATE WILL SEEK APPROVAL FOR MORE THAN A HALF BILLION DOLLARS IN PROJECTS TO RESTORE COASTAL AREAS AND FISHERIES AFFECTED BY LAST YEAR'S HUGE BP OIL SPILL. THE MONEY WOULD COME FROM $1 BILLION THAT BP AGREED TO SPEND IN APRIL IN A PACT WITH THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AND THE FIVE GULF STATES AFFECTED BY THE OIL SPILL. JINDAL SAID MONDAY HE EXPECTS LOUISIANA TO GET THE BULK OF THAT MONEY BECAUSE THE STATE SUFFERED A DISPROPORTIONATE SHARE OF DAMAGE FROM THE SPILL. THE PROJECTS INCLUDE OYSTER HABITAT RESTORATION, FISH HATCHERIES AND BARRIER ISLAND RESTORATION PROJECTS.

IN THE THREE MONTHS SINCE THE SPEED LIMIT WAS RAISED ON PORTIONS OF I-49 THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION HAS RECEIVED NOTHING BUT POSITIVE FEEDBACK. DOTD SPOKESPERSON DUSTIN ANNISON EVEN THOUGH THE FEEDBACK HAS BEEN GOOD THERE ARE NO PLANS TO RAISE THE SPEED LIMIT TO 75 MILES PER HOUR ON OTHER LOUISIANA INTERSTATES.

A GAY RIGHTS ORGANIZATION IS SEEKING SUPREME COURT REVIEW OF THE CASE OF A GAY COUPLE WHO WANTED BOTH THEIR NAMES TO APPEAR ON THE BIRTH CERTIFICATE OF THE LOUISIANA CHILD THEY ADOPTED IN NEW YORK. EARLIER THIS YEAR, THE 5TH U.S. CIRCUIT COURT OF APPEALS RULED IN FAVOR OF A LOUISIANA REGISTRAR WHO INSISTED ONLY ONE FATHER'S NAME CAN GO ON THE CERTIFICATE. THE APPEALS COURT SAID THE REGISTRAR'S REFUSAL TO PLACE BOTH NAMES ON THE CERTIFICATE DOES NOT DENY LEGAL RECOGNITION OF THE NEW YORK ADOPTION BY BOTH MEN.

A NEW ORLEANS MAN HAS BEEN ACCUSED OF LEAVING A 7-YEAR-OLD CHILD IN A HOT CAR SO HE COULD GAMBLE AT A CASINO. THE JEFFERSON PARISH SHERIFF SAYS 26-YEAR-OLD IRONE HILTON WAS BOOKED WITH CHILD DESERTION AND CRUELTY TO A JUVENILE AND JAILED IN LIEU OF $21,000 BOND.

A ONE-CAR ACCIDENT ON LA. HIGHWAY 106 HAS CLAIMED THE LIFE OF A VILLE PLATTE TEEN.
17-YEAR-OLD JEANNINE SHAFER WAS PRONOUNCED DEAD AT THE SCENE OF THE CRASH ON LA 106. STATE POLICE SAY SHAFER WAS NOT WEARING HER SEATBELT, AND WAS EJECTED FROM THE VEHICLE.

A MANDEVILLE MAN CONVICTED FIVE TIMES OF DRIVING WHILE INTOXICATED HAS BEEN SENTENCED TO 10 YEARS IN PRISON. AUTHORITIES SAY 40-YEAR-OLD CHRISTOPHER STIER WAS ON PROBATION FOR A FOURTH DWI CONVICTION WHEN OFFICERS FOUND HIM SLUMPED OVER IN THE FRONT SEAT OF HIS CAR AT A NEW ORLEANS AIRPORT PARKING GARAGE ON APRIL 1.KENNER POLICE SAID STIER'S VEHICLE HAD SIDE SWIPED A CAR IN A NEIGHBORING LANE NEAR THE AIRPORT AND HE KEPT DRIVING.

LSU AND WASHINGTON HAVE CHANGED THE DATE OF THEIR 2012 MEETING IN BATON ROUGE, MOVING THE GAME UP THREE WEEKS TO SEPT. 8. LSU OFFICIALS ANNOUNCED ON THE MOVE ON MONDAY, SAYING THE TEAMS MUTUALLY AGREED TO MOVE THE GAME TO THE SECOND WEEK OF THE 2012 SEASON. NOW LSU WILL MEET WASHINGTON ONE WEEK AFTER OPENING ITS 2012 SLATE IN TIGER STADIUM AGAINST NORTH TEXAS.

God Bless America!

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