KSYL Local News

News For Friday 10/11/13


News for Friday 101113

By Dave Graichen

 

After  a  second  Louisiana Parish Water system tests positive for a brain eating amoeba,  one state lawmaker calls for statewide testing of public drinking water  systems.  New  Orleans  state  Senator  JP Morrell  says finding the amoeba in St. Bernard Parish water means a possible systematic problem. Morrell has  written  Governor  Jindal  and  the  health department, urging  statewide  testing and a set benchmark for chlorine amounts that will kill the amoeba yet still be harmless to humans.

 

There are just two more days to cast early ballots for the October 19th  special election. Secretary of State Tom Schedler reminds us to take  advantage of the ease and convenience of casting your vote early. There are local issues on ballots in 46 parishes, but the highest  profile race will be in the state's 5th Congressional District, where  voters must choose a successor the Rodney Alexander in the U.S. House. So far only around 23-thousand early ballots have been cast. Early voting ends Saturday at 6p. The election is one week from tomorrow

 

State employee layoffs since Gov. Bobby Jindal took office neared the 8,000 mark as of September’s end, according to the latest state Civil Service report issued Thursday. Employee layoffs associated with the transfer of LSU hospitals in Shreveport and Monroe to private operation pushed layoffs of classified employees to just under 8,000. The numbers are in a report to the Legislature which updates layoff activity through the first three months of the state fiscal year. About 41,800 classified, rank-and-file employees remain on the state payroll.

 

State  Police say an elderly couple from Ferriday  has  been  killed following  a three-vehicle crash last night. They says the driver of a pickup, 77-year-old  Carolyn  Smith,  failed to stop at Highway 84

and  two  cars traveling in different directions  slammed  into  the truck. Smith and her 80 year old husband both died.

 

State Police report one of their officers collapsed and  died  while on   duty   Yesterday   in   Houma.  Supervisor  Sgt.  Brett  Lange  was 48-years-old. Attempts to  revive  him  by  fellow troopers and EMTs were unsuccessful. He was a 23-year-veteran of the State Police. His cause of death is under investigation. Lange  leaves  behind  a wife and two sons.

 

 The federal government shutdown is, of all things, affecting  beer...at least on a small scale. Bayou Teche Brewing President  Karlos Knott says they're one of Louisiana's craft brewers waiting  for permission to release seasonal beer from a federal agency whose  employees are furloughed.  Knott says the labels on new beers have to be approved by the  Alcohol and Tobacco Tac and Trade Bureau or TTB before they can go  out.

 

 A Bossier Parish judge denies parole eligibility for a Ouachita Parish  teen convicted of murdering his parents in September 2010. Dalton Fletcher's first sentence was tossed out after the U.S. Supreme Court  ruled last year that juvenile convicted of murder may not be denied  possible parole. That ruling leaves it up to judges on a case-by-case  basis. Fletcher’s Attorney says he will appeal.

 

A  43-year-old  Livingston  Parish  man  is  convicted of conning an elderly  woman  with dementia out of virtually everything  she  had. Gary Gorman romanced  the  75-year-old victim and convinced her they would get maried. She gave him  over  $80-thousand  from  a  reverse mortgage,  $132-thousand  from  an annuity and signed over power  of attorney. He also maxed out all her credit cards. The jury took just 30 minutes to convict him. His sentencing is in December.

 

A Lafayette school teacher  is being disciplined for allegedly doing something to influence students  into  gluing  themselves into their seats. The matter is being investigated, but the  teacher  is  under

suspension.

 

It's  going  slowly still but Louisianians are signing up for health care coverage  through  the  federal  government's "health insurance marketplace." Vantage Health Plan spokesman  Billy Justice says just over a dozen people have completed the signup  &  purchase  of their offered plans so far. Justice  says  there  have  been numerous sign-ups via Vantage sales agents,  as  many seek to avoid  problems  with  the  HealthCare.gov website.

 

A former state Representative who  was  accused of federal tax fraud plead guilty in US District Court in New  Orleans today to all three counts.  Girod Jackson who represented the West  Bank  of  Jefferson Parish is  scheduled  to  be  sentenced in January and faces up to 3 years in prison.

 

Two men who allegedly  cut  through  a  prison  fence  at Angola and attempted  to elude officers for two hours before being caught  have plead not guilty to simple escape. 49-year-old Melvin Johnson who is a rapist from Orleans Parish and 24-year-old Aaron Francois who is a murderer from  Lafayette  were  assigned defense attorneys and trial has been set for March 17th.

 

The team that claimed LSU's first Bowl Championship Series title in 2003 will be honored during a halftime ceremony Saturday night in  Tiger Stadium. It's been ten years since the Tigers claimed the first national title for LSU in 45 years beating Oklahoma 21-14 in  the Sugar Bowl. Skyler Green will be among those honored.  The 40 members of the 2003 national championship team will be there

for the ceremony.

 

 

 

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