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Monday, January 06, 2014

Monday, January 06, 2014





TEMPERATURES ARE EXPECTED TO GET INTO THE UPPER TEENS TONIGHT, SO THE ST. JOSEPH’S SHELTER FOR MEN IN LAFAYETTE HAS INSTITUTED THEIR FREEZE PLAN, WHICH WILL LAST THROUGH WEDNESDAY. RESIDENT MANAGER STEVEN CARRIER SAYS THEY EXPECT ABOUT 25 RESIDENTS TO CHECK IN TONIGHT. TERRY HUVAL OF LAFAYETTE UTILITIES SYSTEM SAYS THE BEST WAY TO KEEP WATER PIPES FROM FREEZING IS TO INSULATE THEM. HE SAYS IF TOO MANY PEOPLE LET THEIR FAUCETS DRIP, IT COULD RESULT IN NOT HAVING ENOUGH WATER PRESSURE TO FIGHT POTENTIAL FIRES.





BOND HAS BEEN SET FOR A JENNINGS MAN ACCUSED OF SHOOTING AND KILLING A FRIEND ON NEW YEAR’S EVE AND DUMPING HIS BODY ON THE SIDE OF A ROAD. DISTRICT JUDGE STEVE GUNNEL SET A BOND OF 500 THOUSAND DOLLARS FOR 21-YEAR-OLD KEEGAN REON, WHO HAS BEEN CHARGED WITH SECOND DEGREE MURDER. REON TOLD INVESTIGATORS THAT HE SHOT 21-YEAR-OLD RUSTON REED OF JENNINGS AT THE RESIDENCE OF 22-YEAR-OLD JULES PATRICK BATISTE, LOCATED ON JOE LOUIS STREET, AND THEN DUMPED THE BODY NEARBY ON RACCA ROAD. BATISTE HAD HIS BOND SET AT 75 THOUSAND DOLLARS FOR ACCESSORY AFTER THE FACT TO SECOND DEGREE MURDER.





OPELOUSAS POLICE HAVE A SUSPECT IN CUSTODY IN CONNECTION TO FRIDAY NIGHT’S FATAL SHOOTING. JULIE DARCY HAS MORE.





Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration is paying an outside contractor $4 million to help it find ways to make state government more efficient. The governor's top budget adviser, Commissioner of Administration Kristy Nichols, announced the contract award Friday, saying the consulting firm Alvarez & Marsal has been chosen to do the work. Nichols says she expects the efficiencies to be identified by the consulting firm to drum up savings for the state that "far exceed" the contract cost. Nichols' office says the firm already has started its work.





A COMPREHENSIVE PLAN TO GUIDE THE GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT OF LAFAYETTE OVER THE COMING DECADES IS BEING FINALIZED BY A GROUP OF CITY PARISH OFFICIALS, CONSULTANTS AND COMMUNITY MEMBERS. THE PLAN CALLS FOR REVERSING THE TREND OF SPRAWL OUTSIDE THE CITY LIMITS WHILE SOME PARTS OF THE CITY DECLINE. CITY PARISH CHIEF DEVELOPMENT OFFICER KEVIN BLANCHARD, WHO IS HELPING OVERSEE THE PLANNING PROCESS, SAYS HE WOULD LIKE TO SEE MORE INCENTIVES FOR DEVELOPERS WHO TARGET AREAS WITHIN THE CITY FOR GROWTH RATHER THAN USING GOVERNMENT REGULATIONS. THE CITY PARISH COUNCIL IS EXPECTED TO LOOK AT THE PLAN LATER THIS YEAR AND DECIDE WHETHER TO TAKE ACTION ON THE RECOMMENDATIONS.





THE CALCASIEU PARISH LIBRARY SYSTEM IS NOW OFFERING E-BOOKS FOR THOSE WITH IPADS AND TABLETS. WORKING WITH THE SURROUNDING PARISHES, THE CALCASIEU LIBRARY SYSTEM NOW HAS A COLLECTION OF TWENTY THOUSAND E-BOOKS, AND THAT IS GROWING. PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER CHRISTY DUHON SAYS THERE HAVE BEEN 150 THOUSAND DOWNLOADS SO FAR, OR ABOUT TWELVE THOUSAND A MONTH, AND THE NUMBERS ARE GROWING. TO DOWNLOAD A BOOK, YOU NEED A LIBRARY CARD AND PIN NUMBER, AND YOU CAN CHECK OUT A BOOK FROM HOME INSTEAD OF GOING TO THE LIBRARY.





The LSU AgCenter plans a series of clinics in January to help rice farmers prepare for the upcoming crop year. Steve Linscombe, director of the AgCenter Rice Research Station, says growers will be able to get advice on variety selection and field preparations. Clinic topics include controlling weeds, insects and diseases.

The schedule includes -- Tuesday at the Welsh Community Center, Wednesday at the Civic Center in Ville Platte,Thursday at the Acadia Parish Extension Office, in Crowley, and Friday: at the American Legion Hall in Kaplan. The clinic begins each morning at eight.





First-time claims for unemployment insurance in Louisiana for the week ending Dec. 28 decreased from the previous week's total. The Louisiana Workforce Commission said Friday that initial claims dropped to 1,721 from the previous week's total of 2,578. The commission said the shorter work week due to the Christmas holiday contributed to the decrease. There were 2,505 initial claims during the comparable week in 2012.



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