KSYL Local News

News For Monday 08/13/12


NEWS FOR MONDAY 081312
BY DAVE GRAICHEN

AS A PART OF LOUISIANA'S CELEBRATION OF ITS 200TH ANNIVERSARY OF STATEHOOD, LPB PREMIERES A NEW DOCUMENTARY TONIGHT. "LOUISIANA: 200 YEARS OF STATEHOOD" PRODUCER TIKA LAUDUN (TICK-UH LOW-DN) SAYS THE SPECIAL COVERS A LOT OF GROUND IN JUST 60 MINUTES. LAUDUN SAYS THE PROGRAM IS NARRATED BY HARRY CONNICK JR. AND TRACES THE MAJOR EVENTS OVER THE PAST 200 YEARS IN LOUISIANA. THE DOCUMENTARY AIRS TONIGHT AT 7, ON LPB. IT WILL REPEAT WEDNESDAY NIGHT AT 8:30.

THERE'S NO LONGER ANY SPECULATION OVER WHETHER GOVERNOR BOBBY JINDAL WOULD BE REPUBLICAN PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE MITT ROMNEY'S RUNNING MATE. THAT HONOR GOES TO WISCONSIN CONGRESSMAN PAUL RYAN. LSU POLITICAL SCIENCE PROFESSOR ROBERT HOGAN SAYS ROMNEY'S SELECTION OF RYAN ENERGIZES THE REPUBLICAN PARTY'S CONSERVATIVE BASE. IN A STATEMENT RELEASED BY JINDAL, HE CALLED CONGRESSMAN RYAN A GOOD FRIEND AND ONE OF THE SMARTEST GUYS HE SERVED WITH IN THE U-S HOUSE. THE GOVERNOR SAYS REPRESENTATIVE RYAN HAS THE COURAGE OF HIS CONVICTIONS, WHICH IS WHAT THE COUNTRY NEEDS. HOGAN SAYS JINDAL WILL REMAIN ACTIVE IN ROMNEY'S CAMPAIGN.

THE NATIONAL REPUBLICAN PARTY IS SUPPORTING THE LOUISIANA STATE PARTY OVER SUPPORTERS OF RON PAUL IN A DISPUTE OVER THE DELEGATION TO REPRESENT THE STATE AT THE NATIONAL CONVENTION IN TAMPA. THE REPUBLICAN NATIONAL COMMITTEE'S COMMITTEE ON CONTESTS AFFIRMED STATE PARTY CHAIRMAN ROGER VILLERE'S CONDUCT OF THE STATE CONVENTION IN SHREVEPORT, IT RELEASED ITS DECISION LATE FRIDAY IN WASHINGTON, D.C. PAUL'S SUPPORTERS CONTEND THAT THE STATE PARTY MADE ILLEGAL LAST-MINUTE RULE CHANGES TO THWART A RON PAUL MAJORITY ELECTED IN CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT CAUCUSES IN APRIL.

UNITED HEALTHCARE WANTS GOV. BOBBY JINDAL'S ADMINISTRATION TO REVERSE THE MULTIMILLION-DOLLAR HIRING OF BLUE CROSS AND BLUE SHIELD OF LOUISIANA TO MANAGE STATE EMPLOYEE HEALTH INSURANCE PLANS. IN A 15-PAGE PROTEST RELEASED LAST WEEK, UNITED HEALTHCARE ACCUSED THE OFFICE OF GROUP BENEFITS, WHICH HELPED REVIEW THE PROPOSALS, OF PRODUCING A FLAWED ANALYSIS, USING OBJECTIONABLE SCORING AND "BENDING OVER BACKWARDS" FOR BLUE CROSS AND BLUE SHIELD. MEANWHILE, A LEGISLATOR IS SEEKING STATE ATTORNEY GENERAL BUDDY CALDWELL'S INPUT ON WHETHER OUTSOURCING PLAN, WHICH SHIFTS DUTIES HANDLED BY STATE WORKERS TO A PRIVATE COMPANY, REQUIRES LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE APPROVAL, COMMISSIONER OF ADMINISTRATION PAUL RAINWATER SAID NO FURTHER LEGISLATIVE APPROVAL IS NEEDED.

STUDENTS WHO ACCEPT A TUTION VOUCHER AS PART OF THE STATE'S NEW VOUCHER PROGRAM WILL NOT BE ABLE TO PLAY VARSITY SPORTS THIS YEAR. LOUISIANA HIGH SCHOOL ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION COMMISSIONER KENNY HENDERSON SAYS THEY'RE TREATED LIKE ANY OTHER STUDENT, WHO TRANSFERS FROM ONE SCHOOL TO ANOTHER AND THEIR HOME ADDRESS DOESN'T CHANGE. HENDERSON ANTICIPATES LHSAA MEMBERS WILL HOLD A VOTE IN JANUARY WHETHER TO CHANGE ELIGIBILITY RULES FOR VOUCHER STUDENTS. GOVERNOR BOBBY JINDAL HAS SAID HE HOPES THE LHSAA RECONSIDERS ITS ELIGIBILITY RULE FOR VOUCHER STUDENTS. BUT HENDERSON SAYS AS OF NOW THEY'LL HAVE TO SIT OUT A YEAR.

THE NUMBER OF WEST NILE VIRUS CASES CONTINUES TO INCREASE IN LOUISIANA AS HEALTH OFFICIALS REPORT ANOTHER 15 CASES OF THE MOSQUITO-BORNE DISEASE.
SO FAR THIS YEAR, 68 CASES OF WEST NILE INCLUDING SIX DEATHS HAVE BEEN REPORTED. AND STATE HEALTH OFFICIALS SAY MORE THAN HALF OF THE CASES HAVE BEEN THE MORE SERIOUS NEUROINVASIVE STRAIN OF THE DISEASE. THE HEALTH DEPARTMENT SAID 37 CASES OF NEUROINVASIVE WEST NILE VIRUS HAVE BEEN IDENTIFIED, THE HIGHEST IN SIX YEARS.

A CALCASIEU PARISH GRAND JURY HAS INDICTED A FORMER PRIEST ON CHARGES ACCUSING HIM OF SEXUALLY ABUSING THREE BOYS BETWEEN JULY 1, 1986, AND JULY 1, 1991. 56 YEAR OLD MARK BROUSSARD, A FORMER PRIEST AT OUR LADY QUEEN OF HEAVEN AND AT ST. HENRY CATHOLIC CHURCHES, WAS CHARGED LATE LAST WEEK. THE TEN CHARGES IN THE INDICTMENT WERE THE FIRST BROUGHT BEFORE A GRAND JURY. INITIALLY, HE WAS BOOKED ON 224 COUNTS. BROUSSARD IS BEING HELD AT THE CALCASIEU CORRECTIONAL CENTER IN LIEU OF $3.4 MILLION BOND.

LOUISIANA'S HEALTH AGENCY MUST SAVE $56 MILLION ON DRUGS FOR MEDICAID PATIENTS TO HELP BALANCE THE STATE BUDGET, BUT DOESN'T YET HAVE A FINAL PLAN FOR DOING THAT. THE CHANGES WILL TAKE EFFECT OCT. 1, AND EMERGENCY RULES WILL BE PUBLISHED IN SEPTEMBER. LEGISLATORS, PHARMACY INTERESTS AND OTHERS SAY THEY ARE CONCERNED ABOUT THE LACK OF TRANSPARENCY AND WHAT THEY CALL A RUSH TO MAKE CHANGES. CONSUMER GROUPS WORRY ABOUT RESTRICTED DRUG ACCESS.

DREDGING OPERATIONS ARE UNDERWAY AT THE LAKE PROVIDENCE PORT IN EAST CARROLL PARISH. THE PORT HAS BEEN CLOSED TO BARGE TRAFFIC, BECAUSE OF SAND BUILD UP. A DREDGE CALLED THE BUTCHER ARRIVED YESTERDAY TO UNCLOG THE PORT CHANNEL. U-S REPRESENTATIVE RODNEY ALEXANDER OF QUITMAN SAYS AREA FARMERS ARE WORRIED THEY WILL NOT BE ABLE TO SHIP THEIR CROPS. THE COMBINATION OF FLOODING ALONG THE RIVER LAST YEAR AND LOW LEVELS THIS YEAR HAS SAND AND SILT THAT'S CREATED AN OBSTACLE FOR SHIPS.



 

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