News for Tuesday 012814
Closed Until Further Notice:
I-49 from Rapides Station North To The Highway 71Exit South of the city
The Gillis Long Bridge (Jackson St.) In Alexandria
The Highway 8 Bridge In Boyce
Rapides, Grant, Allen, Avoyelles, Natchitoches, Sabine, Evangeline, La Salle, Beauregard, Vernon & Catahoula Parish public schools closed Today
All Catholic Schools Rapides & Avoyelles Closed Tuesday & Wednesday
Alexandria Country Day School - Closed Tuesday & Wednesday
NSU, Louisiana College, Closed Thru Wednesday
LSUA Closed Tuesday
The Rapides Parish Courthouse will be closed today.
State offices will be closed today in all Cenla parishes except for Catahoula, Natchitoches and Winn parishes.
City Of Pineville Offices Closed
A winter storm warning is in effect until six A-M tomorrow for the lower half of Louisiana. State Climatologist Barry Keim says we could see freezing rain, sleet and snow. The National Weather Service says we could see 1-to-3 inches of snow and locally higher amounts for areas north of the Interstate 10 corridor. Ice accumulations of one quarter of an inch is possible south of I-10.
The Department of Transportation is taking precautions on the roads. DOTD is trying to keep roads open as long as possible. Officials say they'll have trucks out sanding and salting roads. But there is not enough equipment to keep all bridges open so they will focus on keeping main corridors open and safe.
State Police will have extra patrols out today in an effort to avoid the dramatic increase they saw in weather related accidents during last Friday's winter storm. LSP Spokesperson Captain Doug Cain says there was a 400% increase in weather related crashes including six fatality crashes. Cain says the LSP is working closely with DOTD to salt, sand and de-ice the roads. Cain says having extra troopers on patrol will help them determine which roads need to be closed due to icy conditions.
President Obama's State of the Union address tonight could have a tremendous impact on low wage workers in Louisiana and across the country. U-L Lafayette Political Science professor Pearson Cross says the President is expected to ask Congress to pass a higher minimum wage. Cross says raising the minimum wage will not make Louisiana's republican delegation happy, because there's a concern this will hurt businesses. G-O-P Congressman have said they would rather see the President talk about making changes to Obamacare, but Cross says that's unlikely. Latest reports say Obama's approval ratings are low going into tonight's State of the Union. But Cross says that's not unusual for a President heading into his sixth year of office.
The Louisiana Workforce Commission reported Monday. first-time claims for unemployment insurance in Louisiana for the week ending Jan. 18 decreased to 2,726 from the previous week’s total of 3,330. There were 3,850 initial claims during the comparable week in 2013.