News for Monday 070819
Compiled by Dave Graichen
Forecasters are keeping an eye on a trough of low pressure over the southeastern US which forecast maps show moving toward the northeastern Gulf of Mexico where the chances for tropical development have increased. According to the Hurricane Center, a board low pressure area will likely form in a few days, and, thereafter, upper-level winds support some development.
Governor Edwards officially kicked off his re-election campaign over the weekend in his hometown of Amite with a repeat of his RV tour. The Edward’s campaign is touting a successful legislative session that included the first teacher pay raise in a decade. Edwards is the south’s lone democratic governor facing two major republican candidates in October, U-S Representative Ralph Abraham and Businessman Eddie Rispone. The Edwards RV Tour continues throughout the week.
A Louisiana memorial will be held this coming Sunday for John Walton, half of KZMZ’s Walton and Johnson radio show. The celebration of life will be held at Generations Hall in New Orleans from noon to 3 p.m., which will include a Second Line and tribute brass band. The public is invited to attend.. John Walton passed away last Wednesday due to multiple heath issues. A Texas memorial service is also in the works.
In a devastating blow to state tourism, it was announced over the weekend that all of the Mississippi Gulf Coast beaches have been closed for swimming as the expanding bloom of toxic blue-green algae blankets the state's waters. On Sunday the Mississippi Department of Environmental Quality announced the closures of Pascagoula Beach West and East, the final two state beaches that were open for swimming.
State Treasurer John Schroder is blocking the state from using 25 million dollars in unclaimed property in this fiscal year’s budget, telling lawmakers if they want the money, they’ll “have to drag me to court”. Schroder says the Legislature has appropriated 850 million dollars of unclaimed property funds over the decades, but after doing some research, he doesn’t think the move it legal. An Edwards spokesperson responded, saying “The budget bill passed by the Legislature and signed into law by the Governor appropriates that money for critical needs throughout the state”, and that they hope they don’t have to go to court to get the funds.
The Tunica-Biloxi Tribe of Louisiana presents the first Louisiana Rural Economic Development Summit along with Southern University Law Center this week in Marksville at the Paragon Casino Resort. Tribe Chairman Marshall Pierite (pee rite) says the goal of the summit is to connect rural communities with local, state, and national leaders, as well as Native American Country. Pierite hopes the summit, which kicked of yesterday and continues through tomorrow, helps develop a steady platform for small business owners and elected officials.
The Diocese of Baton Rouge announced on Sunday two more additions to its list of Catholic clerics who have been credibly accused of sexual abuse, bringing the total to 43. Baton Rouge Bishop Michael Duca released the initial list in January, which included 37 names. He said then that it would evolve over time as other diocese release their own lists amid a nationwide push for transparency from church leaders.
An Oxford Economics report says Louisiana is one of the states most vulnerable to losing a significant amount of jobs due to automation. The report says Louisiana is particularly vulnerable to the robotics revolution due to its status as a “low-skill” region that relies on manufacturing and service jobs. Oregon is most at risk, followed by Louisiana, Texas, and Indiana. Hawaii, Florida, and Nevada were marked as the safest states, due to their statewide status as tourism hubs.
A law recently signed by Governor Edwards brings new restrictions to rescue shelters on how and when they can pass along animals to research facilities. Houma Representative Jerome Zeringue says in the event that the animal ends up going to a research facility, the law increases the likelihood of an animal finding a good home. Zeringue says among the regulations, shelters must notify those making an animal drop off that they do provide animals for testing. It also eliminates automatic euthanizing of animals for research that could possibly find a good home. Zeringue says each violation would result in a $1000 fine. The law goes into effect August 1st.
The trial of former LSU fraternity member Matthew Naquin, who was charged with negligent homicide in the alleged hazing death of Max Gruver in 2017, begins today.
Legal analyst Tim Meche says the proceedings will likely be difficult to watch for both families as the prosecution and defense take turns tearing down both Gruver and Naquin’s character. Naquin is accused of pressuring Gruver into drinking himself to death in a Frat initiation ceremony.
Accident investigators in the Bahamas are going well below the surface of the water to try to figure out what went wrong in the moments before a helicopter crashed after takeoff and killed seven people, including West Virginia coal magnate Chris Cline, his daughter and two of her Louisiana State University classmates. Authorities have said it is too early to draw conclusions about the cause of the crash.
The funeral for beloved Ragin Cajuns baseball coach Tony Robichaux is today at Our Lady of Fatima Catholic Church in Lafayette. Robichaux died last week at the age of 57 following a heart attack. He’s described as a man of faith and a leader for young men.