News for Thursday 030713
By Dave Graichen
And now, there are seven. The Rapides Parish School Board on yesterday selected seven candidates, four of them from within the district to interview for the superintendent's job. The field will be narrowed to three finalists before the Board hires a replacement for interim Superintendent Gerald Woodard.
Interviews will begin Monday. The complete list of simi-finalists can be found in today’s Town Talk.
Governor Jindal will present his tax reform plan to state lawmakers by March 15th. Jindal made the announcement after House Speaker Chuck Kleckley asked the governor to provide details of the proposal that would eliminate income taxes, but increase sales taxes. Department of Revenue Secretary Tim Barfield says their plan would improve the state's business climate.
At that same economic development announcement, The governor would not answer whether or not he has any plans to visit the site of a nine-acre sinkhole in Assumption Parish. Over 350 residents near Bayou Corne have been displaced since the sinkhole opened last August. The governor says his office is receiving "constant" updates" about the situation. That’s all he would say.
36 year old Tericca Simmons has been charged with negligent homicide by the Grant Parish Sheriff's Office. The arrest comes from an investigation that started with the death of her 21 month-old son.
Simmons remains behind bars pending $50,000 bond.
State government would not be able to fire a person because he or she is gay under a bill filed by New Orleans lawmaker Austin Badon. The bill also prohibits discrimination in state employment based on gender identity and gender expression. Since 2011, a bill has been filed every year, to protect gay state workers from employment discrimination, but none of those made it to the House or Senate floor for a vote.
The Alexandria/Pineville area will remember the 150th anniversary of the Civil War with a series of events from today to Sunday. Sherry Ellington with the Convention and Visitor’s Bureau says the events range from speeches, dinner theatre and of course, re-enactments and examples of living history.
The Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry has the forecast danger as very high for portions of the state mainly in southwestern Louisiana. Ag Commissioner Mike Strain says we've had a lot of rain across the region but the danger of wildfires still remains.
A Belgian company plans to spend $150 million to build a plastics storage, packaging and distribution center just north of Baton Rouge, a project that will create 210 direct jobs.The Louisiana economic development department estimated the project will also generate 516 indirect jobs and 150 construction jobs.
A Dry Creek lawmaker files legislation that attempts to crack down on people using an ingredient found in most cough syrups as a drug. Democrat Sue Hill says DXM is used as a cough suppressant but when taken in large amounts can produce euphoria. She says a local judge asked her to file this bill because there's been an increase in teen abuse of DXM. Several states, including Mississippi and Alabama, have already placed restrictions on purchasing DXM products.
Baton Rouge Congressman Bill Cassidy is not happy the Obama administration has decided to halt tours of the White House. Cassidy believes the President is doing this as way to convince Congress the federal government needs to spend more money.
Gas prices fell another penny overnight. The American Automobile Association says the current statewide average is $3.59 a gallon and that's down six cents from this time last week.
A Lafitte man was arrested for allegedly making threats over the phone to two Jefferson Parish schools. Sheriff's Office spokesperson Colonel John Fortunato says the whole situation began Wednesday morning when a caller phoned Fisher High in Lafitte and Marrero Academy. The schools were placed on lockdown after the threats were made. After a search of the schools' buildings, authorities determined the students were safe.