KSYL Local News

News for Thursday 12/06/12


News for Thursday 120612

By Dave Graichen

 

The state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education signs off on a  plan that will result in letter grades placed on publicly funded pre-k  and early childhood education programs. State Superintendent of Education John White says they will try it out in various districts next  year, before implementing a statewide program in 2015.

 

Part-time employment in the state is slowly on the rise and an economist  says it's because business conditions are making it difficult for  workers to find full-time employment. L-S-U Economics Department Chairman, Dr. Robert Newman, says many business owners are not willing  to make a long-term commitment when it comes to hiring. Newman says concerns the potential cost of implementing new health care  reforms and the federal government possibly raising taxes to avoid the  so-called "fiscal cliff" are reasons businesses are hiring part-timers  instead of full-time help.

 

A Forest Hill man is in jail on almost a $1 million bond after Rapides Parish Sheriff's Office detectives uncovered cocaine and drugs at his residence, where surveillance spotted almost 70 vehicles visiting in a single day, according to a release. Detectives started surveillance at 163 Slick Log Road in Forest Hill after received complaints about crack cocaine sales from the address. Wasting no time, detectives obtained a search warrant and served it on Wednesday.

 

This is National Influenza Week, and state health officials have kicked off  this year's "Fight The Flu" campaign to get as many Louisianans  immunized as possible. Dr. Jimmy Guidry, with the Office of Public Health, says flu here in the South is no more severe than elsewhere, but  we tend to have more cases. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control says the flu season is off to an  early start, and it could a bad one. Early surges in flu cases are  reported in Louisiana, Alabama, Mississippi, Texas and Tennessee. Dr. Guidry says it's serious business, with between 1000 and 3000 Louisianans dying of flu each year.

 

Politico and the Wall Street Journal both report Governor Jindal met with  a  casino  billionaire,  who  is  interested in funding a G-O-P presidential candidate's campaign in 2016. The wealthy man's name is

Sheldon Aldelson and the meeting took place  last month in Las Vegas when  Jindal  was in town for the Republican Governor's  Association meeting. Political Analyst Bernie Pinsonat says it appears Jindal is

a man on a mission.

 

The  state has pledged over 135-million  dollars  in  incentives  to Sasol.  That's  the  South  African  energy  company who announced a 21-billion  dollar investment for a complex in  Westlake  that  will

turn natural  gas  into chemicals, diesel and other fuels. Southwest Louisiana Economic Development  Alliance President George Swift says Sasol's announcement this week puts  southwest  Louisiana on the map as place to invest and to get a quality job. The Governor's Office says Sasol will hire 12-hundred  workers  once the energy complex is built.

 

Certain  members  of  the Louisiana House who've criticized Jindal's use of 1-time funding to  pay for continuing government programs are asking  AG Buddy Caldwell to  weigh-in  on  whether  or  not  that's

constitutional.  The  AG's office says they won't render an opinion on the Governor's budget  tactics since they'd be required to defend the constitutionality of the budget. This also keeps them out of the debate that's divided members of the GOP.

 

Police are searching for four robbers who barged into the Barksdale Federal Credit Union in DeRidder Tuesday afternoon, hit a clerk and left with an undetermined amount of money. The DeRidder Police Department received a 911 call around 4 p.m. The suspects, all described as being medium build between 5 feet, 9 inches to 6 feet tall, and wearing masks, hoodies and gloves, entered the credit union, in what is being described as a tactical manner, brandishing handguns. Anyone with information is asked to call authorities.

 

More than 400 people from 12 different  states  were  victims  of  a counterfeit check ring. According to State Police all of the victims wrote  checks  to  the LSU Hospital System.  Then allegedly hospital

employee, Pamela Reams,  used  their  financial  information to make fake  IDs and checks. Reams is with 377 counts of identity theft and more could be added.

 

The Abbeville Police Department says the death of a 3 month old girl has officially been ruled a homicide. They say  the  baby  died from blunt  force  trauma  to  the  head  and  had  several  injuries and

fractures. They aren't releasing any other information at  this time but the investigation is on-going.

 

Louisiana lawmakers  are weighing in on the situation at Camp Minden where millions of pounds  of  improperly stored explosives are being moved,  while  hundreds  of  Doyline   residents   remain  under  an evacuation  order. The product is located on land leased  by  Explo. Bossier City  Rep. Jeff Thompson says he hopes Explo systems is held legally accountable for the inconvenience to the families of Doyline

and to the state. Thompson says the legislature is going to make sure proper oversight and  inspection  laws are put in place to ensure something like this never happens again.

 

The work continues in Webster Parish to move millions  of  pounds of improperly stored explosives from a munitions recycling facility  at Camp   Minden.  The  town  of  Doyline  remains  under  a  voluntary

evacuation  order  through  at  least today. But State Police say most of the evacuees have returned to their homes.

 

Chas Roemer of Baton Rouge, serving his second term on the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education, was elected to lead the board for the next year. Roemer, son of former Gov. Buddy Roemer, was the unanimous choice for board president.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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