KSYL Local News

News For Tuesday 05/06/14


News for Tuesday 050614

By Dave Graichen

 

State lawmakers are concerned about Governor Bobby Jindal's plans to  privatize state-owned hospitals now that the federal government has  rejected the financing plans. The Jindal administration learned on Friday that the US Centers for  Medicare and Medicaid Services will not approve of the financing plans.  But Commissioner of Administration Kristy Nichols says the state will  appeal the decision.  Nichols says if they are not successful on appeal, then it will result  in the state owing the federal government 200 million dollars, because  federal money is a part of the financing deals.  These public-private partnerships are already in place for 8 hospitals  within the LSU hospital system.

 

A measure that would allow judges to grant an immediate divorce in cases  where a spouse or child is a victim of domestic abuse is approved by the  House Civil Law committee. The bill, which has already passed the Senate. It now heads to the House floor.

 

Another bill that attempts to weaken Common Core fails in the  legislature. A House committee shot down a proposal to require  approval of the new Common Core test called, PARCC. State Superintendent  of Education John White voiced opposition. Common Core represents new academic standards in reading, writing, and  math that Louisiana and 42 other states have adopted. 

 

National Tourism Week is this week and Lt. Governor Jay Dardenne  is touring the state to celebrate.  He'll be hosting events throughout his  travels.  The tour started in Monroe yesterday, and will hit Ruston, Shreveport,  Avery  Island,  Hammond  and  more  before  it wraps up Thursday.   Dardenne  wants  to encourage Louisianans to appreciate tourism and the impact it has on the state. Tourism is a $10.8 billion industry  in  Louisiana  and the state is coming off a record setting year.

 

Governor Jindal was in  Avondale  Monday  to announce that the IndyCar Racing Series has agreed to come to the New Orleans Motorsports Park in  2015.   The  park  will  have  to  complete   $4.5   million  in improvements  to  the  course.   Jindal  will need state Legislative approval for the money, which will be combined with private funds.

 

There's   a   potential   "Duck   Dynasty"  connection  to  the  5th Congressional  District  Election  this   fall   to   replace  Vance McAllister.   According  to  the  Monroe  News  Star, Zach Dasher  a

Calhoun pharmaceutical rep with "Duck Dynasty" ties  may  throw  his hat  into  the ring.  Willie Robertson has already stated that he is trying to convince Dasher to run.

 

There's  was  another elementary school gun discovery Monday.  Police responded to a call  from Westdale Heights Elementary School in Baton Rouge, where they discovered  an unloaded .25 caliber handgun on the floor  of  a fifth-grade class-room.   After  questioning  students, authorities are still unclear where the gun came from.

 

Nursing homes and hospitals have proposed constitutional amendments on the Nov. 4 ballot seeking protection from the state budget axe. But the Louisiana Senate on Monday killed a proposed constitutional change aimed at providing the same type protection for services for the elderly, disabled and dying. The Senate voted 13-25 against the measure by state Sen. Fred Mills, R-St. Martinville. Senate Bill 355 fell 13 votes shy of the two-thirds majority in the 39 member Senate to advance.

 

According to a release from  the  office  of  Governor Bobby Jindal, Site Selection magazine named IBM's new technology  center  in Baton Rouge as one of its Top North American Deals of 2013.  The statement also indicates the publication ranked the Baton Rouge, Lake Charles, and  New Orleans regional economic development groups among the  top 11 in the nation.

 

A bill forcing the Louisiana High School Athletic Association to use 3rd-party arbitration to hear player eligibility issues is closer to final  legislative  passage.   The LHSAA is prohibiting an Episcopal

student from playing football this  fall  because  he  is  too  old. Athletic Director Myra Mansur feels a non-partisan arbitrator should hear his case. The  LHSAA rule states that if you turn 19 before September 1st, you cannot  play  varsity  sports  the following school year.  Executive Director  Kenny  Henderson  said  to   the   House   committee  that the 19-year-old  in question is not the first kid who's  had  a tough life and was not allowed to play  under  this  rule.   He says rules are rules. It now heads to the full House for further consideration.

 

The  park program in Baton Rouge known as BREC  says  one  of  their employees  is  fired  after  he  was arrested for allegedly stealing about 4,320 rolls of toilet paper  from  the  company.  BRPD  busted 44-year-old Cordell Curtis who BREC says was a warehouse manager. He was booked with felony theft.

 

The  Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries says, sadly, the two whooping  crane  eggs  that  were  produced this spring were not fertile and they will not hatch.  But spokesman  Bo  Boehringer says it's not all bad news.  He says it's a good sign that the endangered whooping cranes from the LDWF experimental population are mating.

 

Fox Sports reports, Former LSU football players Zach Mettenberger and Anthony Johnson had their drug tests flagged at the NFL combine monday. Mettenberger had a diluted sample, which constitutes a failed drug test. Johnson, failed his test outright. No traces of illegal or banned substances were found in Mettenberger’s sample.

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