News for Tuesday 100113
By Dave Graichen
A mess on I-49 yesterday morning, between The Forest Hill and Meeker exits, after a tanker truck caught on fire. Traffic was detoured for hours as authorities contained the mess. The roadway was reopened shortly before 2 in the afternoon.
The price at the pump has slipped once again. The American Automobile Association says the current statewide average for a gallon of regular is $3.22 which is down a penny from yesterday and 21 cents less than this time last month.
New federal data shows personal income in Louisiana grew at the fourth-fastest rate in the nation, for the first half of this year. The report from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis indicates that growth rate was 1.3 percent. LSU economist Dr. Loren Scott says that's largely driven by new business and industry, and building to house them. In the report, only Arizona, Florida and New Hampshire show higher rates of personal income growth in the years first two quarters.
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Louisiana is advising people to be patient and prepared before you sit down and shop the health insurance marketplace which opens today. BCBS Spokesman John Maginnis says they are working closely with the government but it's possible there will be some technical issues at the start. Customers will be able to begin purchasing health insurance today, but the deadline to purchase coverage for a January 1, 2014 start date is December 15th. He says the marketplace is scheduled to remain open through March 31st.
State officials have lifted the outdoor burn ban that had been in place for fully half of Louisiana's parishes. State Fire Marshal Butch Browning says daytime high temperatures are falling, and there's been a fair amount of measurable rain in drought-stricken areas. However, Browning says even though the ban is over, remember outdoor fires will still be subject to any state or local laws and fire department restrictions.
Governor Bobby Jindal has invited President Obama to Louisiana so he can meet with parents of children who received taxpayer funded vouchers to attend private schools. Jindal's invite is in response to the federal government's lawsuit against the program. The US Justice Department filed the suit seeking to prohibit Louisiana from giving out future vouchers to students who attend public schools that under federal desegregation orders.
The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's office says the wife of the suspect in the case of the pastor who was shot while giving a church sermon, filed rape charges against the preacher last Wednesday. They say Pastor Ronald Harris and the suspect Woodrow Karry's wife exchanged text messages that were found by the suspect last weekend. Both the shooting and the rape allegations are being investigated to determine if there was a consensual sexual relationship between Harris and Karey's wife or if it was non-consensual.
In St. Landry Parish, 34-year-old Todd Richard of Arnaudville has been arrested after allegedly slipping narcotics into his 78-year-old grandmother's food to make her sleep. Sheriff deputies
say Richard gave her drugs so he can smoke crystal met in the house and he also allegedly stole seven-thousand dollars from his grandmother.
Deputies in St. Mary Parish are investigating the death of a man whose body was discovered lying on state Highway 182, near Jeanerette, early Monday morning. An autopsy has been ordered to determine exact cause of death, but detectives have already started investigating the man's death as a homicide.
Flood insurance rate hikes for many south Louisiana homes and businesses built prior to the first 1973 federal flood maps will begin being phased in today as new changes for the National Flood Insurance Program goes into effect. The Oct. 1 trigger applies to properties — businesses, secondary vacation homes and homes that have been repeatedly flooded — that were grandfathered into artificially lower premiums for flood insurance before flood maps were created. Such impacted policyholders will see 25 percent annual premium increases over a few years. However, those not grandfathered in could see their rates go from $400 a year to $15,000.
Can you say 4 and 0… Drew Brees passed for 413 yards and four touchdowns as the Saints served a meal of whoop ass to the Miami Dolphins last night.. the final 38-17.
LSU has dropped four places on the AP Top 25 College Football Poll, after Saturday's hard fought loss to Georgia. LSU went from 6th place last week to 10th. The Tigers are also ranked 11th on the USA Today Coaches' Poll.