Friday, November 01, 2013
The Cameron Prairie National Wildlife Refuge's visitor center in Bell City is closed through Tuesday for plumbing repairs. Diane Borden-Billiot, visitor services manager for the Southwest Louisiana National Wildlife Refuge Complex, located about 25 miles southeast of Lake Charles, says the building's septic system went out. She says employees can use facilities at the refuge's shop yard down the street, but that is not open to the public. The refuge is important for migratory birds and attracts about 30,000 people a year.
A LAFAYETTE MAN IS RECOVERING AT A LOCAL HOSPITAL AFTER HE WAS SHOT DURING AN ATTEMPTED ARMED ROBBERY YESTERDAY. JULIE DARCY HAS MORE.
THE ATTORNEY FOR THE ST. LANDRY PARISH COUNCIL SAYS THE INTRODUCTION OF THE PROPOSED BUDGET AT LAST NIGHTíS SPECIAL COUNSEL MEETING VIOLATED THE HOME RULE CHARTER. LANCE PITRE SAYS THE BUDGET MUST BE INTRODUCED AT LEAST 90 DAYS BEFORE ITS ADOPTION, WHICH IS SCHEDULED FOR NOVEMBER 20TH. HE SAYS THE OTHER RULE THAT WAS NOT FOLLOWED IS THE INTRODUCTION IS SUPPOSED TO BE AT A REGULAR COUNSEL MEETING. PARISH PRESIDENT BILL FONTENOT SAYS THEY WANTED TO WAIT TO SEE IF A TWO CENT SALES TAX WAS APPROVED BY VOTERS ON OCTOBER 19TH SO THOSE TAXES COULD BE INCLUDED IN THE 2014 BUDGET.
Most of the nearly 388,000 households in Louisiana that receive food stamps will be hit with a drop in their aid Friday, when a temporary boost in the federal benefits disappears. The reduction is estimated to be anywhere from $11 to $43 or more each month, depending on how many people live in the household. That's about a 5 percent reduction, according to the Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services. Spokesman Trey Williams didn't have an exact figure of how many Louisiana food stamp recipients will get an aid cut, saying it would affect most recipients.
JUDGE DAVID RITCHIE HAS GRANTED A CHANGE OF VENUE FOR THE VIDEO VOYEURISM TRIAL OF DR. PETER LAFURIA. THE O-B-G-Y-N IS ACCUSED OF TAKING INAPPROPRIATE PICTURES OF HIS PATIENTS AND FACES 269 FELONY CHARGES, INCLUDING 186 COUNTS OF VIDEO VOYEURISM. THE TRIAL WAS SCHEDULED FOR MARCH 17TH IN LAKE CHARLES, BUT INSTEAD WILL BE MOVED TO BATON ROUGE. JUDGE RITCHIE DETERMINED THAT AN UNBIASED JURY COULD NOT BE FOUND IN LAKE CHARLES.
A REVISED JUNKED VEHICLE ORDINANCE WILL BE INTRODUCED AT TUESDAY NIGHTíS LAFAYETTE CITY PARISH COUNCIL MEETING. THE ORDINANCE WAS LAST ENFORCED IN 2007 WHEN A MAN FILED A LAWSUIT AFTER THE CONSOLIDATED GOVERNMENT ATTEMPTED TO REMOVE FOUR VEHICLES FROM HIS PROPERTY. THEY SETTLED AFTER A JUDGE GAVE THE CONSOLIDATED GOVERNMENT LITTLE HOPE OF WINNING DURING THE PRE-TRIAL PHASE. THE NEW ORDINANCE REVISES THE DEFINITION OF A JUNKED VEHICLE AND GIVES CITIZENS THE RIGHT TO AN ADMINISTRATIVE HEARING TO CHALLENGE ANY ENFORCEMENT ACTIONS.
THERE WAS AN INCREASED POLICE PRESENCE YESTERDAY AT MORGAN CITY SCHOOLS. THATíS BECAUSE OF A NOTE FOUND BACK IN SEPTEMBER THAT WAS DEEMED THREATENING AND REFERENCED HALLOWEEN. POLICE LIEUTENANT JAMES BLAIR SAYS THAT, AS A PRECAUTION, THEY INCREASED THE POLICE PRESENCE AT LOCAL SCHOOLS AND CONDUCTED SAFETY CHECKS AND SEARCHES WITH THE COOPERATION OF SCHOOL FACULTY. THE AUTHOR OF THE NOTE, WHICH WAS FOUND AT MORGAN CITY HIGH SCHOOL, WAS NOT IDENTIFIED.
Registered voters in 39 parishes can cast their ballots early, beginning Saturday, for the Nov. 16 municipal elections. Secretary of State Tom Schedler says the early voting period runs through Nov. 9 and is available from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily, excluding Sunday. Residents can vote early in person at their parish Registrar of Voters Office or other designated locations. The Nov. 16 elections include the runoff in the 5th Congressional District race between state Sen. Neil Riser and political newcomer Vance McAllister, both Republicans.