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News For Monday 03/31/14

News for Monday 033114

By Dave Graichen


Louisiana's unemployment rate fell  to  its  lowest  level since mid 2008  in  the  month  of February according to the US Department  of Labor. The state's unemployment  rate was 4.9 percent in  January and was 4.5 percent last month.


Today is the last day to sign-up for private health insurance plans  offered through the Affordable Care Act, also known as Obamacare. Blue  Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana spokesperson Robin Mayhall says the  federal government is not requiring the uninsured to purchase a plan by  the end of today, but start the process if you want coverage in 2014. The federal government reports there's been an increase in the last  week in the number of uninsured people signing up for coverage through

the Health Insurance Marketplace.


State  officials  announce that  the  Phelps  Correction  Center  in Dequincy will re-open.  The  state  closed  the facility in November 2012,  resulting  in  300  employees  losing  their  jobs  or  being

transferred to another prison. But the prison is  re-opening  and it will  house  about  three-hundred  adult  men,  who  are non-violent offenders that are within four years within their release date.


Today lawmakers will discuss legislation that would put regulations on  traffic cameras that issues tickets. New Orleans Representative Jeff  Arnold has filed bills in the past to put certain restrictions on the  cameras that can issue tickets, and one of the three bills before  committee today deals with issuing citations through the mail. House Bill 859 would require that automated traffic enforcement

systems use the standardized yellow light time. Arnold says studies  have shown that the best way to reduce accidents is to extend the  caution light time.


The House Commerce committee will hear legislation today that will  prohibit an employer or a school from asking for a person's log-in and  password information for their personal e-mail or social media page.  The bill by Baton Rouge Representative Ted James also states that an  employer can't fire someone if they don't give up that information.


On April 5th there are several local governments in Louisiana that  have tax measures on the ballot and voter turnout for that election  will likely be low. That's why state senator Bret Allain of Franklin (ah-Leh) has filed a constitutional amendment to require at least a  voter turnout of 20% before any tax measure would be implemented. Allain doesn't think it's right that very small percentages of people  show up at the polls then vote on a tax that will apply to everyone in their municipality.


After months of arguments outside the State Capitol, lawmakers are set to cast their first votes Wednesday on the future of the academic standards known as Common Core. In an unusual move, the House Education Committee will devote what may be a daylong hearing, and possibly more, strictly to the bills that would repeal or revamp the classroom goals, which were adopted by Louisiana and 44 other states.


A Boston-based hedge fund is threatening to shut down a major pipeline that provides natural gas to thousands in Louisiana and Mississippi. ArcLight Capital Partners is threatening to abandon the American Midstream Pipeline , which was built in the 1920, that runs from Ouachita Parish to as far south as East Baton Rouge Parish. It provides natural gas to Jonesville, Ferriday, Sicily Island, Vidalia, Slaughter and Clayton as well as Natchez, Miss. Vidalia Mayor Hyram Copeland said the company is asking towns to pay $200 million to replace the line.


The Natchitoches Parish School Board says 13 people have applied for the position of school superintendent. The applicants are being vetted for minimum eligibility. Derwood Duke, superintendent in Natchitoches since 2009, announced in January that he would resign April 30.

The first round of interviews to determine finalists to become Duke’s successor will be April 8-10.


Louisiana State  Police  say  a  deputy  with  the  Richland  Parish Sheriff's office is under arrest for sexual battery and Malfeasance. They say 39-year-old Dewey Allen of Rayville committed battery  on a female without her consent while in his patrol unit. Bond is set  at $40,000  and Allen was terminated. He faces up to 15 years in prison and a $5,000 fine if convicted.


The St. Helena  Parish Sheriff's office says a 6 month old baby died Thursday after drowning  when a vehicle rolled into a pond. They say the child was in the care of her grandparents who could not stop the car from sinking after it  fell  off  a 20 foot cliff into the water  while  the infant was strapped inside. First  responders  could  not reach the baby in time. The incident is under investigation.


This season's shrimp harvest so far has been smaller than normal and that  has  caused  prices  at  the  market  to  go up for consumers. Louisiana Shrimp Association President Clint Guidry says most of the shrimp we eat is imported and there has been a decline  in  imported shrimp as well. It’s hoped prices will come down the closer we get to summer.


Tune In For Flash Back Fridays

Local Events


Pleasant Hill Baptist Church


Sunday August 3rd 9:45a

A Gospel Music Concert By



INFO: 318-765-8011


Brass In Blue

will be presenting a concert

at Coughlin-Saunders Performing

Arts Center

August 29, 2014 at 7:00 p.m.

The performance is family-friendly

and open to the public,

Free of charge.

Reserve your tickets

at any TicketCentral booth,

online at


or by calling 318.445.7705.

2014 Walk

To End Alzheimers

September 13th

Kent House Plantation

Registration at 9am

Ceremony at 10am

Info: ClickLogo Above

Call 318-861-8680

Thursday September 4th

Downtown @ The Hearn

An Evening With

Scott Joplin

Classical Guitarist

John De Chiaro

For Tickets..

Ticket Central

Or Call 318-445-7705


September 20th

A Cycling Event

Kent House Plantation

(318) 487-5998





1115 Texas Avenue
Alexandria, LA


9AM - 4PM 




Ticketmaster - Local Shows




Jay Z

July 20th

New Orleans



Big Smo

July 24th

Marksville, LA

Paragon Casino / Resort


Tony Bennett

July 25th

Bossier City

Horseshoe Casino & Resort


Steely Dan

July 26th

New Orleans, LA

UNO Lake Front Arena



July 29th & 30th

Lafayette, LA



Wayne Toupes

July 31st

Marksville, LA

Paragon Casino / Resort


Sarah McLachlan

August 1st

New Orleans

Saenger Theater


Gary Allen

August 2nd

Kinder, LA

Coushatta Casino & Resort


Justin Timberlake

August 3rd

New Orleans Arena


Neal McCoy

August 18th

Marksville, LA

Paragon Casino


3 Dog Night

August 16th

Vinton, LA

Delta Downs


Vicki Lawrence & Mama

August 16th

Opelousas, LA

Evangeline Downs


Rickey Smiley & Friends

August 16th

Lafayette, LA

Heymann Arts Ctr.


Mickey Gilley

August 30th

Shreveport, LA

Sam's Town Casino


Ron White


September 1st

New Orleans

Mahalia Jackson



Clint Black

September 13th

Vinton, LA

Delta Downs Casino


Jeff Dunham

September 13th

Bossier City, LA

Horseshoe Casino


Jay Lano

September 13th

Kinder, LA

Coushatta Casino & Resort


One Direction

September 25th Superdome


Katy Perry

October 8th

New Orleans

Smoothy King Ctr


Sesame Street

Make A Friend

October 24th

Lafayette, LA

Cajun Dome


Kenny Logons

October 25th

Vinton, LA

Delta Downs Casino


Sesame Street

Make A Friend

November 8th

New Orleans, LA

UNO Lakefront





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