KSYL Local News

News For Monday 081511


NEWS FOR MONDAY 081511
BY DAVE GRAICHEN

CLASSES BEGIN TODAY FOR STUDENTS IN AVOYELLES PARISH. IN RAPIDES PARISH, IT’S WEDNESDAY. TODAY IN RAPIDES PARISH ROUGHLY 1,800 TEACHERS FROM ACROSS THE DISTRICT WILL JOIN THE TRADITIONAL BACK-TO-SCHOOL MEETING WHILE SITTING IN FRONT OF A COMPUTER SCREEN. SUPT. GARY JONES SAYS THEY ARE ALL VERY EXCITED, BECAUSE THIS IS THE FIRST TIME THE SCHOOL DISTRICT HAS EVER DONE LIVE VIDEO STREAMING TO ALL OF ITS SCHOOLS. NOW, INSTEAD OF ALL THE TEACHERS COMING IN FOR A BACK-TO-SCHOOL MEETING, THE MESSAGE WILL BE GOING DIRECTLY TO THEM WHEREVER THEY ARE. THE MEETING WILL BE FOLLOWED UP BY A SERIES OF WORKSHOPS.

FOR THE FIRST TIME IN MODERN HISTORY, DEMOCRATS NO LONGER HOLD A MAJORITY OF LOUISIANA'S REGISTERED VOTERS. THE ADVOCATE REPORTED THAT VOTER STATISTICS SHOW DEMOCRATIC REGISTRATION HAS DIPPED BELOW 50 PERCENT FOR THE FIRST TIME SINCE 1957 HE EARLIEST DATE THAT RECORDS COVER. THE SECRETARY OF STATE'S OFFICES SAID THAT COMBINATION OF REPUBLICAN AND OTHER PARTY REGISTRATIONS BARELY MAKE UP A MAJORITY OF LOUISIANA'S 2.8 MILLION REGISTERED VOTERS. AS LATE AS 1978, DEMOCRATS HELD 90 PERCENT OF THE REGISTRATIONS. THERE HAS BEEN A STEADY DECLINE SINCE THEN.

MORE THAN 230 NEW LOUISIANA STATUTES, EITHER ADJUSTMENTS TO EXISTING PROVISIONS OR ENTIRELY NEW LAWS, TAKE EFFECT MONDAY. AMONG THE CHANGES: ABORTION CLINICS MUST GIVE MORE INFORMATION TO WOMEN BEFORE THEY CAN TERMINATE A PREGNANCY, INCLUDING NEW SIGNS TELLING PREGNANT WOMEN THAT THEY CANNOT BE COERCED INTO ABORTION. SOCIAL NETWORKING SITES, CHAT ROOMS AND PEER-TO-PEER NETWORKS ARE OFF-LIMITS TO SEX OFFENDERS CONVICTED OF VIDEO VOYEURISM OR A LIST OF CRIMES INVOLVING A MINOR. TVS ARE ALLOWED IN THE FRONT SEAT OF VEHICLES, REMOVING A PROVISION THAT RESTRICTED TELEVISION SCREENS TO BEHIND THE DRIVER'S SEAT OF A CAR, TRUCK OR OTHER VEHICLE. FIND MORE OF THE NEW LAWS ON THE KSYL WEBSITE, UNDER LOCAL NEWS.

THE PENALTIES GO UP TODAY ON COMPANIES WHO KNOWINGLY HIRE ILLEGAL ALIENS. THE NEW LAW PASSED BY THE STATE LEGISLATURE EARLIER THIS YEAR. AN EMPLOYER FOUND IN VIOLATION OF HIRING AN ILLEGAL IMMIGRANT WITHOUT CHECKING CITIZENSHIP, WOULD BE FINED 500-DOLLARS PER ILLEGAL WORKER, UP FROM 250-DOLLARS. THE AMOUNT OF THE FINE FOR MULTIPLE VIOLATIONS COULD BE AS HIGH AS 25-HUNDRED DOLLARS AND SUSPENSION OF A COMPANY'S LICENSE. THE AUTHOR OF THE MEASURE, RIVER RIDGE REPRESENTATIVE KIRK TALBOT, SAYS EMPLOYERS WOULD NOT BE FINED IF THEY USE THE FEDERAL E-VERIFY SYSTEM AND AN EMPLOYEE WAS LATER REVEALED TO BE WORKING ILLEGALLY.

WITH THE ARRIVAL OF MID-AUGUST, THE ATLANTIC HURRICANE SEASON IS ABOUT TO GO INTO A PERIOD OF PEAK ACTIVITY. STATE CLIMATOLOGIST BARRY KEIM SAYS CONDITIONS IN THE ATLANTIC ARE PRIME FOR TROPICAL CYCLONE DEVELOPMENT. KEIM SAYS SOME OF THE GULF COAST'S MOST NOTORIOUS STORMS OCCURRED DURING THE WEEKS FROM MID-AUGUST TO MID-OCTOBER.

OPELOUSAS ALDERMAN REGGIE TATUM HAS RECEIVED A COURT ORDER RESTORING HIM AS MAYOR PRO TEMPORE OF THE CITY COUNCIL. THE ORDER WAS ISSUED LAST FRIDAY BY A STATE JUDGE, PENDING A COURT HEARING ON AUG. 26.TATUM FILED SUIT AUG. 9 AGAINST MAYOR DONALD CRAVINS SR. AND THREE COUNCIL MEMBERS AFTER THEY REMOVED HIM FROM OFFICE. IT'S THE SECOND TIME HE'S TAKEN THEM TO COURT. THE BATTLE OVER TATUM'S POSITION BEGAN IN JUNE, WHEN TATUM WAS INITIALLY REMOVED WITH A VOTE OF THREE CITY COUNCIL MEMBERS IN FAVOR OF OUSTING HIM, THREE ABSTENTIONS AND A DECIDING VOTE CAST BY CRAVINS. THAT REMOVAL WAS REVERSED BY A COURT THAT RULED LOUISIANA'S OPENING MEETINGS LAW HAD BEEN VIOLATED. TATUM WAS REMOVED AGAIN DURING A JULY 12 COUNCIL MEETING.

THE JOINT LEGISLATIVE BUDGET COMMITTEE HAS MADE 15-MILLION DOLLARS AVAILABLE TO THE LOUISIANA DEPARTMENT OF ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT TO HELP ATTRACT NEW BUSINESS TO THE STATE. THE JINDAL ADMINISTRATION IS CURRENTLY PURSUING 13 PROJECTS. ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT SECRETARY STEPHEN MORET SAYS MOST OF THESE PROJECTS WILL MAKE SITE SELECTIONS DECISIONS IN THE NEXT FOUR TO SIX WEEKS. MORET SAYS IF THEY COULD CONVINCE THESE COMPANIES TO DO BUSINESS IN LOUISIANA IT WOULD MEAN 38-HUNDRED GOOD PAYING JOBS.

A MOTHER'S CONFESSION LEADS TO THE ARREST OF A 16-YEAR OLD GIRL FROM THE REDWATER AREA IN A TRIPLE MURDER CASE. AUTHORITIES SAY THE GIRLS MOTHER CONTACTED THEM FRIDAY NIGHT WITH NEWS THAT HER DAUGHTER HAD CONFESSED TO KILLING A TEXARKANA MOTHER AND HER TWO CHILDREN. AUTOPSIES CONFIRMED THE THREE DIED FROM VIOLENT INJURIES PRIOR TO A HOUSE FIRE WHICH INVESTIGATORS BELIEVE WAS SET TO DESTROY EVIDENCE.

LOUISIANA STATE POLICE IS STARTING A NEW ALERT SYSTEM THAT WILL SEND MASS TEXT MESSAGES AND EMAILS TO THE PUBLIC WITH EMERGENCY INFORMATION. TROOPER RUSSELL GRAHAM SAYS THE PROGRAM CALLED, "NIXLE" IS A LOT LIKE TWITTER. GRAHAM SAYS RESIDENTS IN BATON ROUGE AND NORTH OF LAKE PONTCHARTRAIN CAN SIGN UP FOR THE ALERT SYSTEM TODAY AT WWW.NIXLE.COM. THEY'LL SOON LAUNCH THE PROGRAM STATEWIDE.

IN HIS FIRST RADIO INTERVIEW SINCE COMPLETING HIS FEDERAL PRISON SENTENCE, FORMER GOVERNOR EDWIN EDWARDS IS CRITICAL OF THE CURRENT ADMINISTRATION. EDWARDS SAYS HE DOESN'T FEEL GOVERNOR JINDAL HAS PROVIDED EFFECTIVE LEADERSHIP IN COPING WITH THE STATE'S REVENUE DEFICITS. EDWARDS SAYS THE STATE'S PROBLEMS CAN BE SOLVED, BUT "NOT IF YOU'RE ON YOUR WAY TO WASHINGTON"...A REFERENCE TO MR. JINDAL'S SUSPECTED AMBITIONS FOR A HIGHER FEDERAL OFFICE.

A 30-YEAR-OLD THIBODAUX MAN HAS BEEN TAKEN INTO CUSTODY IN CONNECTION WITH THE KILLING OF A 7-YEAR-OLD BOY WHO WAS FOUND DECAPITATED ON THE SIDE OF A STREET SUNDAY. POLICE SAID THE CHILD WAS FOUND ON THE STREET OUTSIDE THE HOUSE WHERE HE LIVED. THE CHILD HAD CEREBRAL PALSY AND HAS TO USE A WHEELCHAIR. AUTHORITIES SAID A PASSING DRIVER SPOTTED THE BOY'S HEAD ON THE SIDE OF THE ROAD IN FRONT OF THE HOUSE. POLICE SAID THE BODY WAS FOUND IN A WHITE GARBAGE BAG NEARBY.

NATIONAL BEEF PACKAGING CO. OF KANSAS HAS RECALLED MORE THAN 60’000 LBS OF GROUND BEEF AFTER THE OHIO DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE FOUND DANGEROUS LEVELS OF E. COLI BACTERIA IN THE MEAT. THE RECALLS AFFECT PRODUCTS SOLD MAINLY IN FLORIDA, GEORGIA, ALABAMA, MISSISSIPPI, LOUISIANA, SOUTH CAROLINA AND TENNESSEE, BUT THE MEAT COULD HAVE BEEN DISTRIBUTED NATIONWIDE. LOCALLY KROGER AND WINN DIXIE ARE ON THE LIST. THE AGRICULTURE DEPARTMENT SAYS THERE HAVE BEEN NO REPORTS OF ILLNESSES AND THE RECALL IS JUST A PRECAUTIONARY MEASURE.

THE BOARD OF ALDERMEN IN THE TOWN OF BASTROP HAS VOTED TO BAN THE USE OF ALL TOBACCO PRODUCTS IN THE TOWN'S NINE PARKS. THE BAN INCLUDES THE USE OF CHEWING AND SMOKELESS TOBACCO. VIOLATORS FACE FINES OF $25 FOR A FIRST OFFENSE, $50 FOR A SECOND OFFENSE AND $100 FOR SUBSEQUENT OFFENSES. THE TOBACCO BAN TAKES EFFECT JAN. 1.

A MEXICAN MIGRANT WORKER WHO DIED IN LOUISIANA ABOUT A YEAR AGO OF RABIES HAS GONE INTO RECORD BOOKS AS AMERICA'S FIRST RECORDED HUMAN DEATH AS A RESULT OF BEING BITTEN BY A VAMPIRE BAT. RELAX. THE BAT BITE OCCURRED WHILE THE MAN WAS STILL IN MEXICO.

God Bless America!

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