News for Monday 072913
By Dave Graichen
The first woman elected to Congress in Louisiana, former US Representative Lindy Boggs, passed away. LSU media professor Bob Mann says Boggs was a known ambassador for Louisiana and dedicated her life to public service and civil rights. Mann says Boggs was a graceful trailblazer with a tremendous amount of compassion for the poor. She succeeded her husband, Thomas Hale Boggs Sr. in Congress where she served nearly 18 years. Lindy Boggs was 97.
Louisiana colleges and universities lag in new rankings by Forbes Magazine. The publication rated Tulane the state's #1 school, but even so, it is #128 out of 650 colleges ranked. LSU ranked 179 out of 650 in the Forbes list.
An advocacy group urges citizens to call their congressmen about a proposed cut to Medicare and Medicaid funding for dialysis treatment. Nancy Scott is with the group, Dialysis Patient Citizens. She says the proposed cut is nearly 10%, which could be disastrous for persons who rely on assistance with paying for kidney dialysis. Scott, who was a dialysis patient herself for 7 years, says having the treatments is not optional, and one cannot simply forego the dialysis if one can't afford it. She says lives are on the line if the funds are cut and treatment centers close. Louisiana has the nation's 6th-highest rate of patients needing dialysis in the U.S.
LSU President and Chancellor F. King Alexander says he hopes the pay raises they are able to grant their faculty and staff will be a sign of good things to come in the future. It was announced Friday that employees in the entire LSU System will see get an increase for the first time in four years. Alexander says the funds for these adjustments, ranging up to 4%, are coming from internal administrative savings and from anticipated enrollment increases. He says the raises themselves will vary by and within institution and personnel types.
Five Madison Parish prison guards are under arrest; accused of abusing inmates at the parish jail in Tallulah. State Police Trooper Albert Paxton says Madison Parish Sheriff Larry Cox asked the LSP to
investigate allegations against the guards on July 16th. Based on the LSP investigation, two of the guards are charged with aggravated battery and malfeasance in office. Three others are also charged with malfeasance.
The Monroe Police Department says they are looking for someone who tried to rob two different ATMs early Friday morning in Ouachita Parish with a stolen truck. Sgt Mark Johnson says the first incident happened at the Richland State Bank in Monroe around 2am in a stolen truck. Johnson says the suspect was not successful in gaining access to that ATM after he ripped it off the ground then he fled the scene. He says the investigation revealed the same suspect then tried to do the same thing at a bank in West Monroe about 30 minutes later. Johnson says the truck was found abandoned later.. The suspect remains at large.
LA Swift, the low-cost bus service between Baton Rouge & New Orleans will end next week. The service was begun after Hurricane Katrina in 2005, to assist displace Crescent City residents during the recovery. Department of Transportation spokeswoman Lauren Lee says 100% federal funding for LA Swift has now run out. In order to keep the LA Swift buses rolling past the end of this month,
local sources would have to put up about $750-thousand yearly to match federal funding. That money is not in the state's budget. About 10-thousand rode LA Swift weekly , at a $10 round trip fare.
After a few days of practice, New Orleans Saints coaches and players seem to be in agreement that there is a renewed energy within the team. First-year Saints defensive coordinator Rob Ryan feels good about how things are going so far and is impressed with how many leaders there are on the team.