Thursday, September 19, 2013
Two southwestern Louisiana airports have received U.S. Department of Transportation grants. U.S. Rep. Charles Boustany, R-Lafayette, says the Chennault Industrial Airport Authority in Lake Charles received a $2 million grant that will be used jointly toward rehabilitating the runway and for a wildlife hazard assessment. The Jefferson Davis Airport Commission in Jennings received $78,300 for an airport layout plan identifying future capital needs of the airport.
THE LAFAYETTE PARISH SCHOOL BOARD REJECTED APPLICATIONS FROM TWO ORGANIZATIONS THAT WANTED TO START FIVE CHARTER SCHOOLS IN THE PARISH. SUPERINTENDENT PAT COOPER HAD ASKED THE BOARD TO APPROVE THE APPLICATIONS BECAUSE IT WOULD HELP ALLEVIATE OVERCROWDING IN THE YOUNGSVILLE AREA AND HELP UNDERACHEIVING STUDENTS IN NORTH LAFAYETTE. ONLY KERMIT BOUILLION AND MARK COCKERHAM VOTED TO APPROVE THE APPLICATIONS. THE TWO ORGANIZATIONS PREVIOUSLY ANNOUNCED THEIR INTENTIONS TO GO TO THE BOARD OF ELEMENTARY AND SECONDARY EDUCATION FOR TYPE 2 CHARTER SCHOOLS, WHICH ARE OVERSEEN AND FUNDED BY THE STATE.
THE ST. LANDRY PARISH COUNCIL UNANIMOUSLY DIRECTED THEIR ATTORNEY TO RESEARCH A STATE LAW REQUIRING PUBLIC BOARDS AND OFFICIALS TO DOCUMENT ANNUAL EXPENDITURES AND SALARIES. THE REQUEST WAS MADE BY BOARD MEMBER WAYNE ARDOIN AFTER THE SHERIFF’S OFFICE PROVIDED THE PARISH GOVERNMENT WITH A LIST OF EXPENSES AND SALARIES FROM HIS DEPARTMENT. HE SAYS SHERIFF BOBBY GUIDROZ TOLD HIM THAT ALL PUBLIC ENTITIES ARE REQUIRED BY STATE LAW TO PROVIDE THAT INFORMATION. ARDOIN SAYS HE WANTS TO KNOW WHY THE SHERIFF’S OFFICE IS THE ONLY AGENCY FUNDED BY THE PARISH GOVERNMENT WHICH HAS PROVIDED THEM WITH A LIST OF EXPENDITURES.
32 LOUISIANA PARISHES HAVE BEEN PLACED UNDER A BURN BAN BY THE STATE FIRE MARSHAL AND THE STATE DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE AND FORESTRY BECAUSE OF THE DRY CONDITIONS. INCLUDED IN THE BAN ARE ACADIA, ALLEN, BEAUREGARD, CALCASEIU, EVANGELINE, JEFF DAVIS, LAFAYETTE AND VERNON PARISHES. IF YOU LIVE IN ONE OF THOSE PARISHES, YOU MUST OBTAIN PERMISSION FROM THE LOCAL FIRE DEPARTMENT OR GOVERNMENT FOR ANY PRIVATE BURNING. VIOLATIONS COULD RESULT IN CIVIL OR CRIMINAL PENALTIES.
THE STATE SUPREME COURT HAS UPHELD A LOWER COURT’S RULING THAT PUBLIC FUNDS CANNOT BE USED TO HIRE OUTSIDE COUNSEL FOR JASON REEVES OF RAGLEY. REEVES WAS CONVICTED IN 2004 FOR THE RAPE AND MURDER OF FOUR-YEAR-OLD MARY JEAN THIGPEN OF MOSS BLUFF, AND HE WAS SENTENCED TO DEATH BY LETHAL INJECTION. THE CAPITOL POST-CONVICTION PROJECT OF LOUISIANA, WHICH IS REPRESENTING REEVES, SOUGHT TO HIRE AN ATTORNEY FROM THE MIDWEST CENTER FOR JUSTICE, BUT IT WAS NOT ALLOWED BY FOURTEENTH JUDICIAL DISTRICT JUDGE MIKE CANADY. REEVE’S ATTORNEYS HAVE REQUESTED A HEARING INTO WHETHER HE IS MENTALLY DISABLED, WHICH WOULD PROHIBIT THE STATE FROM EXECUTING HIM.
LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR JAY DARDENNE WAS IN LAFAYETTE YESTERDAY TO VISIT THE FRENCH IMMERSION PROGRAM AT PRAIRIE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL. MORE THAN 11-HUNDRED STUDENTS ACROSS THE PARISH ARE ENROLLED IN LANGUAGE IMMERSION PROGRAMS. PRAIRIE ELEMENTARY SCHOOL PRINCIPAL JARVIS HEBERT TELLS THE DAILY ADVERTISER THAT IMMERSION STUDENTS ARE BETTER THINKERS AND LISTENERS AND PERFORM BETTER ACADEMICALLY BECAUSE THEY HAVE TO PROCESS INFORMATION QUICKLY. DARDENNE SAYS HE’D LIKE SEE IMMERSION STUDENT SERVE AS AMBASSADORS AT FESTIVALS AND OTHER EVENTS, WHICH WOULD BUILD PRIDE IN THE STUDENTS AND PROVIDE A TREAT FOR VISITORS FROM OUTSIDE THE AREA.
A FOURTH GRADE HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENT IN VERMILLION PARISH IS RAISING A FEW EYEBROWS AFTER LESSONS ABOUT THE LIFESTYLES OF A RAPPER AND MOBSTER WERE INCLUDED. JULIE DARCY HAS THE DETAILS.
The leader of the LSU health care system, Frank Opelka, says the privatization of university-run hospitals and clinics has been smoother than he could have imagined. But he says many transition pieces remain to be worked out.
Opelka says the private hospital operators that have taken over services at LSU hospitals across south Louisiana still need to shift the patient billing, appointment and medical records information to their own software. He says such a transfer is complex, involving lots of detail work to ensure no appointments are dropped and medication lists are correct.