News for Tuesday 030513
By Dave Graichen
17 year old Quantavious Richards, of Alexandria, was arrested Friday by Alexandria police detectives and was charged with three counts of attempted first-degree murder and one count of attempted second-degree feticide. The arrest stems from a drive by shooting Feb. 28 in the 300 block of Florence Avenue. The APD reports that they received a complaint from a man who said he was driving home from work when a man on a bicycle fired several shots at his car. The car was hit, but none of the three people inside - including a pregnant woman - were injured.
The Rapides Parish School Board never got a chance to vote on candidates for superintendent of schools as planned last night. The Board had called a special meeting to receive applications from independent search firm McPherson & Jacobson. But, personnel committee chairwoman Janet Dixon said an email was not sent Sunday from the firm’s office to inform the candidates of the meeting. The Board set another special meeting for Wednesday at 6 p.m. to receive and discuss 31 applications in executive session. Dixon said an email notifying the candidates of the meeting would be sent today.
A Baton Rouge judge rules Governor Jindal's revamp of teacher tenure laws is unconstitutional. In his ruling, Judge Michael Caldwell says the legislation passed last year had too many different items crammed into one law. The Louisiana Federation of Teachers filed the suit. The way the state's school vouchers program, another education reform by the Administration, is funded was also ruled unconstitutional last year. The governor's office says they plan to appeal Monday’s ruling.
Republican legislators complained Monday that the governor’s approach to the budget threatens long-term funding for a popular college tuition program. At issue is $120 million from tobacco companies that the Jindal administration wants to use in next year’s budget for the TOPS Program. The money is a one-time infusion that would leave more dollars in the state general fund to pay other expenses, including health care and higher education, during a time in which the state is pressed for cash.
The good government group Council for A Better Louisiana has some concerns about proposed legislation to do away with the state income taxes, while raising some state sales taxes. CABL president Barry Erwin says it's extremely important that the bill is drafted and debated based on the best possible data available. Erwin says CABL hopes lawmakers will be vigilant that the tax swap is indeed revenue neutral; both now and several years down the road. Erwin says state government must be aware of how the tax proposal will impact local governments, and their ability to raise revenues.
The debate over separate football playoffs for public and private schools heads to the state capitol today. A special legislative panel will hear the pros and cons of the new playoff system. Lafayette Senator Page Cortez says today's meeting will allow lawmakers to gather information on why high school principals voted for separate playoffs. Most public schools say having private and parochial schools compete in their own postseason will give public schools a better chance at winning state titles. But the private schools, also called select schools, say the new system is unfair and waters down the value of a
championship. Cortez says today's meeting is only designed to hear the facts.
Monroe Police say an 8 year old student at Madison James Foster Elementary School brought a loaded .22-caliber pistol to school this morning to trade for a video game. Sgt Mark Johnson says school officials confronted the child after other students told them about the gun. Johnson says the child is to be expelled from the school but is too young to be arrested so he was released to his parents. He says a preliminary investigation revealed that the gun was in the child's home and belonged to his parents.
Lafayette Congressman Charles Boustany announces he will not run for U-S Senate next year. Boustany's spokesman Neal Patel released a statement that says the U-S Representative wants to continue his service on the House Ways and Means Committee. So far, Republican Congressmen Bill Cassidy and John Fleming have expressed interest in challenging Landrieu. So has former US Representative Jeff Landry and BESE President Chas Roemer.
A 34-year-old Eunice man is accused of killing his live-in girlfriend's 19-month old child. Authorities say Robert Henry Miller the Third was booked on a charge of 2nd-degree murder.
LSU has launched its new online master’s degree programs. University Vice-Provost for Academics Gil Reeve says the masters programs are in business administration, construction management and human resource leadership. He says the university feels the time is right to embrace the digital learning experience.
Lafayette police say a man from Sunset is under arrest for killing a man in a bar. They say 37-year-old Jay Lane is charged with one count of second degree murder in the death of 38-year-old Lucas Fargo of Lafayette. Officers located Fargo on the floor of the bar and he later died at a local hospital.
History Channel's "American Pickers", Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz plan to be in Beauregard Parish sometime next month, to search for unwanted treasures. Show producers say the pair are seeking vintage bikes and motorcycles, but just about anything can capture their attention.