KSYL Local News

News For Monday 11/07/11


NEWS FOR MONDAY 110711
BY DAVE GRAICHEN

PINEVILLE RESIDENTS WILL HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY ON SATURDAY THE 19TH TO SAY YEA OR NAY TO A $20 MILLION BOND ISSUE THAT WOULD BE PUT TO WORK MAKING IMPROVEMENTS TO SEVERAL PINEVILLE SCHOOLS, INCLUDING PLANS FOR A NEW UPPER ELEMENTARY SCHOOL TO EASE OVERCROWDING AT J.I. BARRON ELEMENTARY AND A NEW ATHLETICS FIELDHOUSE AT PINEVILLE HIGH SCHOOL. EARLY VOTING FOR THE ELECTIONS STARTED SATURDAY.

NEAR PERFECT WEATHER BROUGHT OUT, WHAT SOME ARE SAYING, RECORD CROWDS FOR THE 43RD LOUISIANA PECAN FESTIVAL IN COLFAX. AS USUAL IT WAS THE LURE OF PECAN PIES AND CANE SUGAR, CARNIVAL RIDES AND ENTERTAINMENT THAT FILLED THE STREETS. PECANS, THOUGH PRICY THIS YEAR WERE ALSO A BIG SELLER.

HEARD THIS BEFORE.. THE CHECK’S IN THE MAIL?? WELL HERE’S A TWIST, THE BILL ISN’T IN THE MAIL YET. ALEXANDRIA RESIDENTS WHO TYPICALLY RECEIVE UTILITY BILLS AT THE BEGINNING OF EACH MONTH SHOULD RECEIVE A BILL NEXT WEEK. THE PROBLEM, A COMPUTER UPGRADE AND A SHORTAGE OF METER READERS. THOUGH THE BILL WILL BE LATE, KEEP IN MIND, YOU STILL OWE FOR WHAT YOU USE. BUT THIS TIME THE BILL WILL BE FOR 40-DAY BILL OR MORE.

ALEXANDRIA POLICE CHIEF LOREN M. LAMPERT WANTS RESIDENTS TO KNOW HIS DEPARTMENT IS BECOMING A DATA-DRIVEN AGENCY. THE DEPARTMENT HAS BEGUN AN INTELLIGENCE-DRIVEN POLICING INITIATIVE TO CRACK DOWN ON CRIME AND RESPOND IN A TIMELY MANNER TO OTHER EMERGENCIES. LAMPERT SAYS POLICE HAVE BEEN GATHERING CRIME DATA SINCE 1998, BUT HAS UNDERUSED THE AVAILABLE INFORMATION.

MAJOR, EXPENSIVE IMPROVEMENTS TO THE BOGALUSA PAPER MILL RESPONSIBLE FOR A MASSIVE AUGUST FISH KILL IN THE PEARL RIVER WILL BEGIN AT THE END OF THE YEAR.
THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENTAL QUALITY RELEASED A TIMELINE LAST WEEK DETAILING WHEN THE TEMPLE-INLAND MILL MUST BEGIN AND COMPLETE CONSTRUCTION OF NEW INFRASTRUCTURE DESIGNED TO PREVENT ANOTHER FISH KILL. THE MILL'S EQUIPMENT MALFUNCTIONED AND SPILLED AN UNAUTHORIZED BY-PRODUCT KNOWN AS BLACK LIQUOR INTO THE PEARL, DEPLETING OXYGEN AND KILLING HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS OF FISH AND MUSSELS. MILL OFFICIALS ORIGINALLY ESTIMATED THE COST OF THE IMPROVEMENTS AT ABOUT $10 MILLION, BUT NOW ANTICIPATE THE COST WILL EXCEED $15 MILLION.

FARM-STATE LAWMAKERS ARE MOVING TO CREATE A WHOLE NEW SUBSIDY THAT WOULD PROTECT FARMERS WHEN THEIR REVENUE DROPS , AN UNPRECEDENTED PROGRAM THAT CRITICS SAY COULD PAY BILLIONS OF DOLLARS TO FARMERS NOW ENJOYING RECORD-HIGH CROP PRICES. THE SUBSIDY, FREE INSURANCE THAT WOULD COVER FARMERS' "SHALLOW CROP LOSSES" BEFORE THEIR PAID INSURANCE KICKS IN, HAS BEEN PUSHED BY CORN AND SOYBEAN FARMERS WHO COULD BENEFIT THE MOST FROM THE PROGRAM. GROWERS GET THE DIRECT PAYMENTS REGARDLESS OF CROP YIELDS OR PRICES. THEY DON'T EVEN HAVE TO FARM. TOP REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS ON THE HOUSE AND SENATE AGRICULTURE COMMITTEES ARE LOOKING AT FOLDING THE NEW SUBSIDY INTO A FARM BILL PROPOSAL THEY ARE QUIETLY CRAFTING AS PART OF THEIR CHARGE BY THE DEFICIT-CUTTING CONGRESSIONAL SUPERCOMMITTEE TO CUT FARM SPENDING.

A NEW TERM FOR LAWMAKERS BEGINS IN JANUARY, BUT NOTHING MUCH IS CHANGING OR ADVANCING IN THE WAYS OF THE LOUISIANA LEGISLATURE. UNLIKE IN OTHER STATES, WHERE OFFICIALS EXERCISE A TRUE SEPARATION OF POWERS BETWEEN THE LEGISLATIVE AND EXECUTIVE BRANCHES, LOUISIANA'S LAWMAKERS ARE MORE THAN WILLING TO CEDE THEIR AUTHORITY TO THE GOVERNOR. THEY'RE AGAIN LETTING THE GOVERNOR CHOOSE THEIR LEADERS, RATHER THAN GOING THROUGH A PUBLIC DEBATE ABOUT WHO MIGHT BE BEST FOR THE JOB AND BEST TO LEAD THE LEGISLATURE. AFTER WINNING OVERWHELMING RE-ELECTION TO A SECOND TERM, JINDAL SHORTLY THEREAFTER ANNOUNCED HIS PICKS FOR SENATE PRESIDENT AND HOUSE SPEAKER: SEN. JOHN ALARIO, R-WESTWEGO, AND REP. CHUCK KLECKLEY, R-LAKE CHARLES. THE GOVERNOR DIDN'T EVEN WAIT UNTIL THE FULL LEGISLATURE WAS CHOSEN FOR THE NEXT TERM. FOUR SENATE SEATS AND 21 HOUSE SEATS REMAIN UNDECIDED, UNTIL THE NOV. 19 RUNOFF.

THE LSU-ALABAMA GAME DREW THE SECOND-HIGHEST RATING OF ANY CBS REGULAR-SEASON COLLEGE FOOTBALL BROADCAST SINCE THE NETWORK BEGAN TRACKING RATINGS IN 1987. THE NETWORK SAID SUNDAY THE NO. 1 VERSUS NO. 2 SHOWDOWN EARNED AN AVERAGE OVERNIGHT RATING/SHARE WAS UP 170% FROM LAST YEAR'S MEETING. THE HIGHEST RATED CBS REGULAR SEASON GAME WAS NOTRE DAME-MIAMI IN 1989

THE NATIONAL INSTITUTES OF HEALTH IS CONDUCTING THE LARGEST STUDY TO DATE ON THE HEALTH EFFECTS OF THE BP OIL SPILL ON THE 55-THOUSAND CLEANUP WORKERS AND VOLUNTEERS. DALE SANDLER, PRINCIPAL INVESTIGATOR FOR THE GULF STUDY SAYS EXPERTS KNOW VERY LITTLE ABOUT THE EFFECTS OF LONG TERM EXPOSURE TO OIL AND OTHER CHEMICALS USED IN THE CLEANUP. THE STUDY WILL MONITOR THE WORKERS WHO HELPED WITH THE CLEANUP OF THE SPILL ALONG THE GULF COAST. RIGHT NOW THE STUDY IS TRYING TO CONTACT EVERYONE WHO WORKED ON THE OIL SPILL CLEANUP OR MAY HAVE TRAINED TO WORK THERE.

MEMBERS OF THE UNITED HOUMA NATION TRIBE OF AMERICAN INDIANS HAVE CREATED A DIGITAL PETITION ON THE WHITE HOUSE'S WEBSITE AS THEY CONTINUE A DECADES-LONG QUEST FOR FEDERAL RECOGNITION. THE UNITED HOUMA NATION'S PETITION MUST GET 25,000 SIGNATURES BEFORE DEC. 1 TO GET AN OFFICIAL RESPONSE FROM THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION. THEY HAVE A LONG WAY TO GO, AS OF THE WEEKEND, THE PETITION, WHICH WAS LAUNCHED TUESDAY OF LAST WEEK, HAD GARNERED JUST UNDER 2,000 SIGNATURES.

SCAM ARTISTS ARE TARGETING ELDERLY LAKE CHARLES AREA RESIDENTS BY IMPERSONATING THEIR GRANDCHILDREN AND SEEKING TRANSFERS OF THOUSANDS OF DOLLARS. AUTHORITIES REPORT THE SCAMMERS ARE USING TECHNOLOGY TO SHIELD THEIR IDENTITIES FROM WOULD-BE VICTIMS AND AVOID DETECTION. THE SCAMMERS APPEAR TO BE USING GOOGLE VOICE, AN INTERNET BASED TELEPHONE SERVICE, TO CALL POTENTIAL VICTIMS IN SOUTHWEST LOUISIANA. GOOGLE VOICE IS AVAILABLE FOR PUBLIC USE AND IS FREE OR, FOR PEOPLE WHO MAKE INTERNATIONAL CALLS, LOW-COST. CARMEN MILLION, PRESIDENT OF THE LOCAL BETTER BUSINESS BUREAU, SAID THAT WHILE THE SCAM RECENTLY AFFECTING LAKE CHARLES IS CLASSIC, THE TECHNOLOGY THAT PERMITS GREATER ANONYMITY IS A NEW WRINKLE.

POLICE IN THIBODAUX SAY A MAN FIRED GUNSHOTS AT A CAR WHERE HIS EX-GIRLFRIEND WAS SITTING WITH A FRIEND IN A STORE PARKING LOT, THEN KILLED HIMSELF AFTER LEADING POLICE ON A CHASE THAT ENDED WITH A CAR CRASH. THE INCIDENT OCCURRED EARLY SATURDAY MORNING.

STILL INSISTING HE IS INNOCENT, A MAN CONVICTED IN A 2010 KILLING IN FERRIDAY HAS BEEN FORMALLY SENTENCED TO LIFE PLUS 90 YEARS IN PRISON. BRYANT BETHLEY WAS CONVICTED OCT. 21 ON ONE COUNT OF SECOND-DEGREE MURDER AND THREE COUNTS OF ATTEMPTED SECOND-DEGREE MURDER IN THE DEATH OF REGINALD "CHUCKY" GREEN. GREEN DIED AFTER BETHLEY FIRED SHOTS INTO A PARKED CHEVY BLAZER FOLLOWING WHAT POLICE SAID AT THE TIME WAS A MONEY-RELATED DISPUTE. THREE OTHERS WERE IN THE VEHICLE BUT WERE UNHARMED.

THE LOUISIANA STATE DEPARTMENT OF AG AND FORESTRY IS LAUNCHING A STATEWIDE AD CAMPAIGN PROMOTING "LOUISIANA GROWN" TURFGRASS THAT FEATURES LSU HEAD COACH LES MILES. AG COMMISSIONER MIKE STRAIN SAYS MILES IMAGE WILL BE USED IN A SERIES OF OUTDOOR, PRINT AND WEB ADS. STRAIN SAYS THE SLOGAN IS "YOU DON'T HAVE TO CHEW IT TO LOVE IT, LOUISIANA GROWN TURFGRASS DEMAND IT." STRAIN SAYS MILES IS A NATURAL FOR THEIR AD CAMPAIGN, ESPECIALLY SINCE THE HEAD COACH LIKES TO EAT GRASS.



SPORTS..
LSU IS NUMBER ONE IN THE BCS STANDINGS AND IN CONTROL ITS OWN DESTINY, AFTER ITS NINE TO SIX OVERTIME WIN AT ALABAMA. THE TIGERS HAVE FOUR GAMES LEFT ON THEIR SCHEDULE, INCLUDING THE SEC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME. JERRY PALM OF COLLEGE-B-C-S-DOT-COM, SAYS LSU COULD STILL LOSE A GAME AND PLAY IN THE BCS NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME. PALM SAYS IF LSU REACHES THE BCS NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP GAME, HE EXPECTS THEM TO FACE STANFORD.

AFTER A DISAPPOINTING LOSS A WEEK AGO TO THE ST. LOUIS RAMS, THE SAINTS BOUNCED BACK WITH A NICE WIN YESTERDAY OVER DIVISION RIVAL TAMPA BAY. QUARTERBACK DREW BREES THREW FOR 258 YARDS AND TWO TOUCHDOWNS AND THE SAINTS ALSO RUSHED FOR 195 YARDS IN A 27-16 VICTORY OVER THE BUCS.







God Bless America!

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