KSYL Local News

News For Friday 02/10/12


NEWS FOR FRIDAY 021012
BY DAVE GRAICHEN

THE JINDAL ADMINISTRATION UNVEILED A 25-BILLION DOLLAR BUDGET YESTERDAY THAT CALLS FOR A REDUCTION IN THE STATE WORKFORCE, HIGHER RETIREMENT COSTS FOR STATE EMPLOYEES AND NO CUTS TO HIGER ED. COMMISSIONER OF ADMINISTRATION PAUL RAINWATER SAYS TO HELP CLOSE A 900-MILLION DOLLAR REVENUE SHORTFALL, THEY PROPOSE THE ELIMINATION 63-HUNDRED STATE JOBS. AND THIS HAS A FAMILIAR RING, THE GOVERNOR'S BUDGET ALSO CALLS FOR THE CLOSURE OF THE DABADIE CORRECTIONAL CENTER IN PINEVILLE, THE TRANSFER OF THE 330 LOW-RISK OFFENDERS AT DABADIE TO THE AVOYELLES CORRECTIONAL CENTER IN COTTONPORT AND THEN SALE OF THE AVOYELLES PARISH PRISON TO A PRIVATE COMPANY.

SEVERAL STATE LAWMAKERS ARE CONCERNED WITH THE NUMBER OF CONTINGENCY ITEMS IN THE GOVERNOR’S BUDGET PROPOSAL. ITEMS THAT CALL FOR FUNDING TO BE AVAILABLE, ONLY IF SPECIFIC CHANGES ARE MADE. ANOTHER MAJOR CONCERN, THE USE OF ONE TIME MONEY, SOME $230 MILLION, TO PLUG BUDGET HOLES.

A MEMORIAL SERVICE TO HONOR LOUISIANA TECH RUNNING BACK TYRONE DUPLESSIS WILL BE HELD IN RUSTON THIS AFTERNOON IN RUSTON. TECH SPOKESMAN PATRICK WALSH SAYS THE THOMAS ASSEMBLY CENTER WILL BE OPEN TO THE PUBLIC STARTING AT 4:30 THIS AFTERNOON FOR FANS, STUDENTS, FRIENDS AND TEAMMATES. DUPLESSIS DIED ON THURSDAY FEBRUARY 2ND IN HIS APARTMENT AND THE CAUSE OF DEATH IS NOT YET KNOWN.

THE LOUISIANA NATIONAL GUARD IS SCHEDULED TO WELCOME HOME SOLDIERS OF THE 204TH THEATER AIRFIELD OPERATIONS GROUP AT ESLER FIELD IN PINEVILLE TODAY.
MORE THAN 20 SOLDIERS FROM THE 204TH, BASED IN HAMMOND, WILL RETURN FROM THEIR 365-DAY DEPLOYMENT TO KUWAIT, WITH DETACHMENTS IN IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN. THE 204TH ALSO SUPPORTED THE SUCCESSFUL WITHDRAWAL OF ALL ARMY AVIATION FORCES FROM IRAQ.

LOUISIANA'S PROPERTY INSURER OF LAST RESORT HAS OFFERED TO SETTLE A DISPUTE OVER SLOW HANDLING OF HURRICANE CLAIMS FROM 2005 FOR UP TO $80 MILLION, WITH NO MORE THAN $25 MILLION OF THAT FOR ATTORNEYS' FEES. THE GOVERNING BOARD OF THE INSURER OF LAST RESORT APPROVED THE OFFER ON THURSDAY. THE BOARD WAS TOLD THAT WOULD COVER ABOUT 25,000 POLICYHOLDERS WHO SAY CITIZENS DID NOT BEGIN ADJUSTING THEIR CLAIMS FOR HURRICANES KATRINA AND RITA WITHIN 30 DAYS AS REQUIRED BY STATE LAW. CITIZENS HAS SAID THAT IT WAS TOTALLY OVERWHELMED IN STARTING THE CLAIMS ADJUSTMENT PROCESS AFTER KATRINA DEVASTATED THE NEW ORLEANS AREA WITH FLOODING IN AUGUST 2005 AND RITA FOLLOWED A MONTH LATER WITH FLOODING IN SOUTHWESTERN LOUISIANA.

THE AMERICAN CIVIL LIBERTIES UNION HAS AMENDED ITS COMPLAINT AGAINST VILLE PLATTE AND THE CITY'S LATE-NIGHT WALKING CURFEW. THE AMENDED COMPLAINT ALLEGES THAT WHILE THE CURFEW HAS BEEN SUSPENDED, THE DANGER HAS NOT PASSED. THE AMENDED COMPLAINT WAS FILED MONDAY. ARTHUR SAMPSON, PRESIDENT OF THE EVANGELINE CHAPTER OF THE NAACP AND THE PLAINTIFF IN THE CASE, SAYS HE REMAINS FEARFUL THAT THE CITY WILL REINSTATE THE CURFEW FOR THE SAME ARBITRARY AND IRRATIONAL REASONS AS IT INSTITUTED IT IN THE FIRST PLACE. THE CITY ADOPTED THE CURFEW IN FEBRUARY 2011 IN RESPONSE TO A RASH OF BREAK-INS AND BURGLARIES.

AS EXPECTED FORMER LSU QUARTERBACK JORDAN JEFFERSON PLED NOT GUILTY YESTERDAY THROUGH HIS ATTORNEY ON A CHARGE OF SIMPLE BATTERY FOR HIS ALLEGED ROLE IN A OUTSIDE OF A BATON ROUGE BAR. JEFFERSON WAS NOT IN THE COURTROOM FOR THE HEARING BUT APPEARED ON AN ATLANTA RADIO STATION AND ONCE AGAIN DENIED ANY INVOLVEMENT IN THE INCIDENT. JEFFERSON'S NEXT COURT APPEARANCE WILL BE ON MAY 10TH. JEFFERSON SAYS PROOF THAT HE WAS NOT INVOLVED IN THE BAR FIGHT WILL COME OUT SOON ENOUGH. HE CALLS THE ENTIRE SITUATION A SCAM.

FORMER LSU RUNNING BACK CHARLES EDWARD SCOTT HAS PLEADED NOT GUILTY TO ONE COUNT OF SEXUAL BATTERY OF AN 18-YEAR-OLD WOMAN LAST YEAR. SCOTT ENTERED THE PLEA THURSDAY. THE 23-YEAR-OLD SCOTT WAS ARRESTED IN NOVEMBER ON A COUNT OF SIMPLE RAPE.

THE ARMY CORPS OF ENGINEERS IS SPENDING $22 MILLION FOR WORK ON ABOUT A DOZEN RIVERS AND PORTS IN LOUISIANA. THE MONEY WAS ANNOUNCED WEDNESDAY BY THE AGENCY. THE BIGGEST CHUNKS GO TO DREDGING TWO RIVERS. OFFICIALS SAY $6.9 MILLION HAS BEEN SET ASIDE FOR THE CALCASIEU RIVER AND $9.1 MILLION FOR WORK ON THE ATCHAFALAYA RIVER. THERE IS ALSO MONEY FOR DREDGING PARTS OF THE RED. U.S. SEN. MARY LANDRIEU, D-LA., SAID THE FUNDS WOULD KEEP VITAL WATERWAYS FROM SILTING IN.

THE LOUISIANA DEPARTMENT OF TOURISM IS LOOKING FOR FESTIVAL FANATICS WHO WOULD BE PAID TO ATTEND FESTIVALS. JACQUES BERRY IS A SPOKESPERSON FOR THE LT. GOVERNOR'S OFFICE, HE SAYS BERRY PEOPLE LOVE TO READ ABOUT LOUISIANA FESTIVALS ON THEIR WEBSITE. HE SAYS THEY'RE LOOKING FOR OUTGOING PEOPLE WHO LOVE FESTIVAL LIFE THAT WOULD BE WILLING TO SPEND A DAY AT A FESTIVAL, TAKE PICTURES AND VIDEO AND WRITE A STORY ABOUT THEIR EXPERIENCE. HE SAYS THE "JOB" DOESN'T PAY MUCH, BUT IF YOU'RE INTERESTED IN BECOMING A FESTIVAL FANATIC YOU CAN VISIT LOUISIANATRAVEL.COM.

A BATON ROUGE MAN IS UNDER ARREST IN CONNECTION WITH THE DEATH OF HIS FOUR YEAR-OLD SON. BRPD SPOKESMAN SGT. DON KELLY SAYS 26-YEAR-OLD SHAWN DEAN IS CHARGED WITH 2ND DEGREE CRUELTY TO A JUVENILE AND FELON IN POSSESSION OF A FIREARM. KELLY SAYS INVESTIGATORS DETERMINED DEAN IS THE ONE WHO LEFT THE HANDGUN IN THE HOME WHERE THE CHILD COULD FIND IT. HE SAYS DEAN WAS OUT ON AN ERRAND WHILE THE MOTHER AND ANOTHER CHILD WERE ASLEEP WHEN THE TODDLER FOUND THE GUN AND ACCIDENTALLY SHOT HIMSELF IN THE HEAD WITH IT. WHEN POLICE ARRIVED ON THE SCENE THE GUN WAS MISSING. IT WAS LATER FOUND IN A NEARBY FIELD. KELLY SAYS DEAN LIKELY HID THE GUN BECAUSE HE IS A CONVICTED FELON.

THE CADDO PARISH SHERIFF'S OFFICE IS LOOKING FOR A SUSPECT WHO SHOT AT TWO SCHOOL BUSES YESTERDAY MORNING WITH A BB GUN. SPOKESPERSON CINDY CHADWICK SAYS BOTH INCIDENTS HAPPENED IN KEITHVILLE AND THAT THEY ARE LOOKING FOR A RED JEEP CHEROKEE WITH BLACK TRIM.

THOUSANDS OF BOWLERS FROM AROUND THE WORLD WILL BE IN THE CAPITAL CITY OVER THE NEXT FIVE MONTHS FOR THE BIGGEST BOWLING TOURNAMENT IN THE COUNTRY. MATT CANNIZZARO WITH THE UNITED STATES BOWLING CONGRESS OPEN CHAMPIONSHIP SAYS NEARLY 60,000 BOWLERS WILL BE COMPETING IN THE GAMES. CANNIZZARO SAYS ABOUT 500 BOWLERS A DAY WILL BE COMING INTO TOWN AND LEAVING TOWN, BUT WILL ONLY BE BOWLING FOR A FEW HOURS DURING THE DAY. HE SAYS OUTSIDE OF THAT TIME THEY'LL BE EATING ENJOYING WHAT LOUISIANA HAS TO OFFER. HE SAYS THE EVENT WILL RUN FROM 7AM- 2AM DAILY UNTIL JULY 10TH.

God Bless America!

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