News for Wednesday 050813
By Dave Graichen
A single vehicle crash on Interstate 49 claims the life of a Pineville woman. State Police reports the victim, 58-year-old Linda Jett, lost control of her car and crashed into several trees on the side of the highway. She was able to be removed from the burning vehicle by a passing motorist but was later pronounced dead at a local hospital. The accident happened yesterday morning.
The Alexandria mall is cracking down on those roaming mobs of young people who seem to fill the mall on weekends. Mall officials announced a new policy Tuesday stating, anyone under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult from 5 p.m. until close on Friday and Saturday evenings. The program is being branded “@5 Family Weekends” because it’s intended to put the focus back on a family friendly atmosphere in the mall. The policy will be enforced by mall security.
The annual Stamp Out Hunger! food drive involving letter carriers nationwide is set for Saturday. Locally, the drive will benefit the Food Bank of Central Louisiana in Alexandria. To participate, residents are asked to leave a sturdy bag containing non-perishable foods -- such as canned soup, canned vegetables, pasta, rice or cereal -- next to their mailbox prior to the time of regular delivery on Saturday, May 11. Local letter carriers will collect these donations as they deliver the mail and take them to The Food Bank of Central Louisiana.
The state Supreme Court has ruled the funding mechanism for Louisiana's private school tuition vouchers program violates the state Constitution. The High Court ruled that using dollars from the so-called Minimum Foundation Program, the fund for public school funding to pay the vouchers goes against the language of the
Constitution. Seemingly un-phased, Governor Jindal said he can get the millions needed to fund the vouchers in house bill #1, the state’s overall budget, before it makes final passage. That budget is already over a billion dollars in the red.
Details emerge on what's contained in the Louisiana House's proposed budget for the fiscal year that starts July 1st. A coalition of Democrats and Republican "Fiscal Hawks" proposes to reduce state tax credits by 15 percent as a way to fund critical services. The Governor's Office says the plan will increase taxes on business and manufacturing by over a billion dollars over 4 years, and will severely damage the state's burgeoning film and electronic media industries.
A state judge has imposed a 9pm curfew on LSU running back Jeremy Hill. Under the judge's order, Hill must stay off the streets between 9 at night and 6 in the morning, and must stay away from bars. It's all conditions of Hill's probation for a fight on April 27th at a Tigerland bar. Hill was already on probation for his January conviction for carnal knowledge of a juvenile.
Shreveport Police say a high school student is under arrest for bringing a handgun on a school campus. Police say the 17-year-old Fair Park High School student was taken into custody after authorities found a .22 caliber handgun in his backpack.
Dozens of people from Louisiana are listed as missing, so does the amazing tale of three women who were found in Cleveland Monday give more families hope? State Police Captain Doug Cain says it's important they work with parents of missing children to keep hope alive, but also not give them false hope. He says human trafficking cases seem to be on the rise. The website for The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children lists 32 kids, with pictures, as currently missing from
Louisiana -- some for decades.
A House bill that would allow off-duty cops and concealed carry permit holders to bring their guns into eating establishments has been killed in a Senate Committee. The bill is sponsored by Haughton Representative Henry Burns, who explains his original intent was to allow officers to eat at restaurants that serve liquor without
leaving their weapon in the car. Burns says he may bring the original intent of his bill back as an amendment to other legislation.
It's already passed the Senate, and now a bill to ban social networking while driving has cleared another legislative hurdle. The House Transportation Committee approved Livingston Senator Dale Erdey's bill, which makes posting to Facebook Twitter or Instagram from behind the wheel punishable with fines and possible jail time.
Next stop the House floor, where it's expected to win final passage.
A solar energy tax credit would be phased out by 2020 under a bill approved in the Louisiana House on Tuesday. The House voted 95-1 for the measure which sponsor state Rep. Erich Ponti said is backed by the industry. Under House Bill 705, the tax credit would drop 35 percent in 2016 and then go away entirely by 2020. The credit cost Louisiana $24 million in 2012. The bill now moves to the state Senate.