BC-LA-MS--Louisiana-Mississippi News Digest,ADVISORY, LA

|
News,Science and Technology

The news in Louisiana and Mississippi at 2 a.m.

Good morning, Louisiana and Mississippi editors.

If you have contributions for or questions about the report, call 800-662-7717, 504-523-3931, 800-222-0046 or 601-948-5897. To report technical problems: 1-800-469-1362. AP stories, along with the photos that accompany them, can also be obtained from http://www.apexchange.com. Reruns are also available from the Service Desk (877-836-9477).

Brian Schwaner is the news editor.

Bill Fuller will be the 4 a.m. breaking news staffer in New Orleans, and Jack Elliott Jr. will be in Jackson at 6:30 a.m..

LOUISIANA TOP STORIES

KATRINA SUIT-CORPS

NEW ORLEANS — A federal appeals court ruling adds a new twist to a complicated legal property rights gith along a canal that was breached during Hurricane Katrina, contributing to the floods over most of New Orleans. The Times-Picayune (http://bit.ly/168p1O3) reports that the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals has knocked the Army Corps of Engineers out of the lawsuit over access and damage to back yards along one side of the 17th Street Canal. .

The following items moved Sunday for Monday newspapers.

XGR-LOUISIANA BUDGET

BATON ROUGE — Divisions are deep as lawmakers on the House budget committee try to craft a version of next year's spending plans and cobble together enough votes to get it out of committee. The House Appropriations Committee is set to rework the budget proposal Monday and try to advance it to the House floor, but even the chairman isn't sure he's got the votes to move the bill. At issue is how to strip $500 million in patchwork financing proposed by Gov. Bobby Jindal and how deeply to levy those cuts on colleges and health care services. Conservative House members are angered by the use of the money, saying it perpetuates the state's budget problems, while others are unhappy with the types of one-time money Jindal is seeking to use. By Melinda Deslatte.

MUSIC-JAZZ FEST

NEW ORLEANS — A steady, sometimes heavy rain, pelted fans at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, but the music flowed on. Umbrellas, rain boots, and plastic ponchos were out in abundance Sunday as fans stood among the puddles and water-soaked grass awaiting clearer skies. By Chevel Johnson. With AP Photos; AP video also being shot.

SEA TURTLES REHABBED

PASS CHRISTIAN, Miss. — Six endangered sea turtles are swimming free in the Gulf of Mexico again, thanks to veterinarians at the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies in Gulfport. WLOX-TV (http://bit.ly/Y6HHJn ) reports that the five Kemp's ridley sea turtles and one green sea turtle had spent a year being rehabilitated.

INDUSTRIAL CARBON-BLACK DUST

(Information in the following story is from: American Press, http://www.americanpress.com)

LAKE CHARLES, La. — Lake Charles officials say a company that repackages petroleum coke may keep operating in spite of neighbors' complaints that fine black dust from the plant is contributing to health problems. The American Press reports (http://bit.ly/17rq89E ) that officials decided Industrial Carbon Services may operate until it exhausts its legislative options.

GULF OIL SPILL-INSECTS

BATON ROUGE — Preliminary results from field work and lab tests indicate two oil components — naphthalene and methylnaphthlane — are at least partly responsible for declines in insect populations in coastal marshes affected by the 2010 BP oil spill, LSU researcher Linda Hooper-Bui said. The mystery is why the compounds are increasing, she said. LSU professor Eugene Turner said the compounds are aromatics that should be venting into the atmosphere. Instead, some process is creating more of them in the soil than is being allowed to be released, he said. In addition, Turner said, the problem is being found not just in heaviest-oiled areas but also in areas affected by small amounts. Although preliminary results point to the two compounds but research continues, he said.

SMART KIDNAPPING

LAFAYETTE — Kidnapping survivor Elizabeth Smart will share her story with Lafayette residents May 2 in a program offered by Hearts of Hope, an advocacy and counseling center for children and sexual assault victims. Smart was 14 years old when she was abducted in 2002 from her Salt Lake City home. She endured various abuses until she was discovered in March 2003 and reunited with her family.

POINTE COUPEE-PUBLIC RECORDS

NEW ROADS — The Pointe Coupee Parish Police Jury has withdrawn its previous decision to settle out of court a public records lawsuit filed against the parish administrator, public utilities director and the jury's president. The Police Jury gave the three officials approval to fight the allegations lodged against them in the suit by Police Juror Justin Cox.

BAKER AUDIT

BAKER — The City Council has ended its decades-old relationship with the Mary Sue Stages auditing firm and awarded a contract for its fiscal year 2013 audit to Postlethwaite & Netterville of Baton Rouge. Councilwoman Joyce Burges, who proposed the motion to select the new firm, said the council considered a total of five firms before settling on Postlethwaite & Netterville. The Stages firm is based in Baker.

LOUISIANA NEWS IN BRIEF

RAIL COMMISSION APPOINTMENT

BATON ROUGE — State Rep. Steve Carter has been appointed to the Southern High-Speed Rail Commission. The commission promotes passenger rail transportation in Alabama, Louisiana, and Mississippi. The appointment was made by Gov. Bobby Jindal. Carter is a Republican from Baton Rouge.

FRANKLINTON-RECREATION

FRANKLINTON — Renovations at the town's baseball and softball fields are getting positive response from Franklinton residents, Alderman John Daniel says. New fences were installed and restrooms were renovated at the seven baseball fields. Fencing was replaced at the both softball fields. The project cost $46,000. The boys' teams have about 500 participants, and about 300 girls are involved in softball, Daniel says. More work will be done at the fields next year, Mayor Wayne Fleming says.

BUSINESS IN ANGOLA

NEW ORLEANS — The World Trade Center of New Orleans is offering a symposium on doing business with the African nation of Angola. The session is set for Thursday from 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. at the Hyatt regency Hotel, 601 Loyola Ave. Attending will be Jose Maria Botelho de Vasconcelos, petroleum minister for Angola, and the nation's ambassador to the United States, Alberto do Carmo Bento Ribeiro. Cost to attend is $45 for World Trade Center members and $60 for others. Registration must be made by Tuesday. For registration and more details, contact Eliza Brierre at 504-619-9834 or ebrierre(at)wtcno.org.

MOSQUITO SEASON-HORSES

BATON ROUGE — State Agriculture Commissioner Mike Strain is advising horse owners to vaccinate their animals for eastern equine encephalitis and west Nile virus as mosquito season kicks in. Strain said authorities have not found cases of either disease so far this year in sweeps across the state. The diseases typically are transmitted by mosquito bites and can be spread to dogs, cats and humans in addition to horses. Strain said horse owners should contact their veterinarian for proper vaccination

K-9 TRAINING COURSE

Lafourche Parish Sheriff Craig Webre is getting ready to unveil a new aid for training police dogs. A new obstacle course for K-9 deputies is to be shown off to the media on Wednesday.

The following items moved Sunday for Monday newspapers.

SCHOOL VANDALISM-COVINGTON

COVINGTON, La. — Covington turned out to help clean up a Catholic school where vandals spray-painted and daubed graffiti. Brother Ray Bulliard, president and principal of St. Paul's School, tell the Times-Picayune (http://bit.ly/10JesjI ) the cafeteria, chapel, baseball stadium, Founder's Circle, main building and religious statues were painted Friday night.

SHREVEPORT AIRPORT

(Information in the following story is from: The Times, http://www.shreveporttimes.com)

SHREVEPORT, La. — Shreveport Regional Airport has finished a seven-month, $5 million project to repave the facility's secondary runway. The runway was opened Friday.

PEOPLES HEALTH-LABAUVE

METAIRIE — Peoples Health has appointed Anna LaBauve as regional director for its Southland region. The company is a Medicare-focused health care company serving 23 parishes in Louisiana. LaBauve is responsible for recruiting and managing the Southland regional staff. She is a registered nurse.

GENETIC ENGINEERING

BATON ROUGE — A workshop on complying with regulations governing genetic engineering of organisms will be held Tuesday in Baton Rouge. The session is designed for academic and public researchers involved in agricultural research with genetically engineered organisms, and will include an overview of federal Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service regulations.

THIBODAUX-POLICE CHIEF

THIBODAUX — Police Chief Scott Silverii says he has withdrawn his application for the position of police chief in Baton Rouge. The state Municipal Fire and Police Civil Service Board said Silverii was among 17 applicants approved to take the civil service exam required for consideration. Silverii says the challenge of policing the state's capital city was something he was initially drawn to after being invited to apply. But after thinking it through, Silverii says he decided not to pursue the position.

SOUTHEASTERN-CONCERT

HAMMOND — Southeastern Louisiana University's Community Music School will present the Northlake Community Band in concert on May 14. The performance is free and open to the public

INSURANCE-WEBSTER PARISH

MINDEN — Employees of the Webster Parish Police Jury are going to pay more for their insurance later on in 2013. The jury's Blue Cross/Blue Shield insurance policy was renewed with a 9 percent increase in health premiums and a 3.5 percent increase in dental premiums.

LOTTERY-UNCLAIMED PRIZE

BATON ROUGE — Louisiana Lottery officials say no one has claimed a $10,000 Louisiana Lottery Powerball prize won on Nov. 28, 2012. The winning ticket was purchased in Baton Rouge. Whoever won it has until May 27 to claim the prize.

OBESITY GRANT

BATROP — A northeast Louisiana nonprofit organization has been awarded a grant to help fight childhood obesity. The North Louisiana Community Enhancement Corp. received the $1,000 grant for the Bastrop Community Walking Trail/Childhood Obesity Prevention Project.

ANALYSIS

Moved in advance for Monday editions

LOUISIANA SPOTLIGHT-ANALYSIS

BATON ROUGE — Tax discussions may be largely dead for the legislative session, but lawmakers have found a list of other issues over which to bicker and battle. While the budget always prompts a fight, proposals to expand Louisiana's Medicaid program, raise new dollars for hospitals, expand gun rights and revisit education changes thrown out by the courts have generated strong and contentious debate. And a fight between optometrists and ophthalmologists appears to be keeping an army of lobbyists in business at the Capitol. AP News Analysis. By Melinda Deslatte.

MEMBER EXCHANGES

Also moved in advance

CIVIL WAR COOKING

PORT ALLEN — Hearth cooking instructor Gayle B. Smith scooped up a shovelful of hot, glowing red coals from the fireplace and told her cooking class audience, "This is your burner." Smith, along with West Baton Rouge Museum employees Linda Collins and Tracy Flickinger, were demonstrating what Southerners would have cooked during the United States' Civil War of 1861-1865, what food stuffs would have been available and what recipes were used. By Cheramie Sonnier, The Advocate.

BONSAI ROCK GARDEN

HOUMA — If you walk over the Twin Spans heading toward east Houma and peer through the chain-link fence right at the end of the bridge, you'll notice an unusual patch of rocks and plants. That's A.J. Connely's rock garden — a 6-by-6-foot collection of mulch, sand, multicolored rocks and bonsai trees on top of his concrete driveway. By Chance Ryan, The Courier. Possible member photo.

SPORTS

The following items moved Sunday for Monday newspapers.

ZURICH CLASSIC

EDITORS: PGA officials say players are being taken to the course and the final round of the Zurich Classic in Avondale, La., which was delayed for the second time because of lightning, is expected to resume shortly.

SAINTS-MOVES

METAIRIE, La. — Former Tulane quarterback Ryan Griffin and ex-Louisiana-Monroe tight end Keavon Milton are among 13 undrafted free agents who have agreed to sign rookie contracts with the New Orleans Saints. The team said Sunday that four linebackers are among rookie free agents who'll join the club's five draft choices and other tryout players in the rookie minicamp May 10-12. They are Nebraska's Eric Martin, North Carolina's Kevin Reddick, Central Florida's Rayford Shipman and Stanford's Chase Thomas.

MISSISSIPPI TOP STORIES

OXFORD MARKER

OXFORD — A new historical marker outside Oxford City Hall condenses 175 years of local history into a little more than 100 words. The sign is larger than its predecessor with 107 words. The sign provides some details of local history, such as how Oxford was chartered in 1836 and named after the university town in England.

DONTAE WALKER GRADUATES

(Also moving on sports wires)

JACKSON, Miss. — One-time high school and Mississippi State football star Dontae Walker says he's overcome his past. He tells The Clarion-Ledger (http://on.thec-l.com/10MBTsq) that he didn't make it to the NFL, but the good Lord gave him another chance. .

The following items moved Sunday for Monday newspapers.

SUSPICIOUS LETTERS

BRANDON, Miss. — The arrest of a 41-year-old Mississippi martial arts instructor in a case of poison-laced letters sent to President Barack Obama and others capped a week in which investigators initially zeroed in on a rival of James Everett Dutschke, then decided they had the wrong man. Federal authorities arrested Dutschke early Saturday at his home in Tupelo. He was charged with "knowingly developing, producing, stockpiling, transferring, acquiring, retaining and possessing a biological agent, toxin and delivery system, for use as a weapon, to wit: ricin." By Holbrook Mohr.

AP Photos MSTUP201-0423131447, MSTUP501-0426131657.

MUSIC-JAZZ FEST

NEW ORLEANS — A steady, sometimes heavy rain, pelted fans at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage Festival, but the music flowed on. Umbrellas, rain boots, and plastic ponchos were out in abundance Sunday as fans stood among the puddles and water-soaked grass awaiting clearer skies. By Chevel Johnson.

MANNING APPEAL

JACKSON, Miss. — Death row inmate Willie Jerome Manning has asked the Mississippi Supreme Court to look again at his case. In a request filed Friday, Manning's attorneys said the Supreme Court overlooked or misunderstood some matters raised in Manning's motion for DNA and other forensic testing. By Jack Elliott Jr..

GULF OIL SPILL-INSECTS

(Information in the following story is from: The Advocate, http://theadvocate.com)

BATON ROUGE, La. — Preliminary results from field work and lab tests indicate two oil components — naphthalene and methylnaphthlane — are at least partly responsible for declines in insect populations in coastal marshes affected by the 2010 BP oil spill, LSU researcher Linda Hooper-Bui tells The Advocate (http://bit.ly/11Zhavr). The mystery is why the compounds are increasing, she said.

SEA TURTLES REHABBED

PASS CHRISTIAN, Miss. — Six endangered sea turtles are swimming free in the Gulf of Mexico again, thanks to veterinarians at the Institute for Marine Mammal Studies in Gulfport. WLOX-TV (http://bit.ly/Y6HHJn ) reports that the five Kemp's ridley sea turtles and one green sea turtle had spent a year being rehabilitated.

OLD FORREST JAIL

(Information in the following story is from: The Hattiesburg American, http://www.hattiesburgamerican.com)

HATTIESBURG, Miss. — The Forrest County Board of Supervisors has accepted $325,000 for the old county jail from a company that plans a mixed-use development. The Hattiesburg American reports (http://hatne.ws/Y4MX02 ) that supervisors had rejected two earlier proposals for less money.

MISSISSIPPI NEWS IN BRIEF

XGR-DEATH PENALTY-TERRORISM

JACKSON — Acts of terrorisms will be added to the list of crimes in Mississippi that could lead to the death penalty, if a victim is killed. Gov. Phil Bryant signed Senate Bill 2223 this past week. It takes effect July 1.

XGR-BOWLES BRIDGE

HOUSTON, Miss. — A bridge on Mississippi Highway 15 in Chickasaw County will be named for the late state Rep. Billy Bowles under a bill signed by Gov. Phil Bryant this past week. House Bill 517 would designate the bridge within the city of Houston, Miss., at its intersection with Mississippi Highway 8 as the "Representative William E. 'Billy' Bowles Memorial Bridge."

The following items moved Sunday for Monday newspapers.

LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE

JACKSON, Miss. — Officials of non-profit, government and philanthropic organizations in Mississippi will gather May 6-7 for the Positioned for Progress conference. The session will be held at the Jackson Convention Complex.

VICKSBURG-MAYOR-BRIBERY

JACKSON, Miss. — A federal judge has agreed to reschedule Vicksburg Mayor Paul Winfield's trial on a federal bribery charge. Winfield is charged with seeking $10,000 in cash in exchange for a city contract. He has pleaded not guilty.

MOSS POINT DRUG BUST

MOSS POINT, Miss. — Moss Point police say officers answered a call about a domestic dispute and found heroin, marijuana and a large amount of the synthetic marijuana called Spice. Police tell The Mississippi Press (http://bit.ly/18axVXU) and WLOX-TV (http://bit.ly/ZVR4cr ) that nearly an ounce of marijuana was out in plain view. They say a search turned up about two grams of heroin and the synthetic marijuana.

XGR-PSC-RURAL WATER

JACKSON — Legislation that Gov. Phil Bryant has signed into law clarifies that the three-member elected Public Service Commission does not have authority over rural water associations. Bryant signed Senate Bill 2322 this week.

GRENADA LAKE HOSPITAL

JACKSON — Legislation that would allow the University of Mississippi Medical Center to take over a hospital in Grenada has been signed into law. Gov. Phil Bryant signed House Bill 1721 this week. It takes effect immediately.

JSU-BROWN SCHOLARSHIP

JACKSON — Lanis Leggett, a senior mass communication major, is the first recipient of the Timothy R. Brown Scholarship, named for the late Associated Press writer and which seeks to promote black male diversity in journalism. The $500 scholarship is named for Brown, a Jackson State University graduate who worked for The Associated Press for 13 years, covering civil rights, education and business issues. Brown died in 2010 at the age of 35.

GE AVIATION-MISSISSIPPI

ELLISVILLE — Gov. Phil Bryant will join GE Aviation President/CEO David Joyce on Tuesday for the grand opening of the company's new 340,000-square-foot aviation components factory in Ellisville. The company, a unit of General Electric Co., expects to hire 250 workers within five years to make composite parts for aircraft engines and systems.

LEADERSHIP CONFERENCE

JACKSON — Officials of non-profit, government and philanthropic organizations in Mississippi will gather May 6-7 for the Positioned for Progress conference. The session will be held at the Jackson Convention Complex. It will offer leadership development, educational forums and networking opportunities. Keynote speakers are Leo Denault, CEO of Entergy Corp., and Stacey Steward, president of United Way USA. More information and registration are available online at www.positionedforprogress.com.

MEMBER EXCHANGES

Moved In Advance

SPAWN'S ON

JACKSON, Miss. — The first signs of spring, the first kickoff of football season, the excitement of shopping and preparing for Christmas — these are just a few of the things that Mississippians look forward to annually and for fishers on Ross Barnett Reservoir, the annual crappie spawn ranks among the most anticipated events of the year. Even though the wind was blowing and waves were nearly white-capping on the main lake this week, it wasn't enough to keep the crappie faithfuls off the water. Boat after boat launched at Goshen Springs and anglers made their way to their favorite spots. For Jimmy Carman of Florence and me, this meant a trip down the main lake to Gilligan's Island where he and his son had put the hurt on them days before. By Brian Albert Broom, The Clarion-Ledger

SHARING SHAKESPEARE

PASS CHRISTIAN, Miss. — The students in Lori Fisher's sixth-grade gifted class watched closely as Luc Jackson and Hayes Leyser practiced their "sword fight." The two boys focused intently on their moves with their props, yet their faces showed enjoyment, and cheers from their classmates didn't hurt. A teen with dark hair and glasses closely followed their moves, enthusiastically leading them through the exciting scene in "Macbeth." It might be Fisher's classroom, but for two hours each week for eight weeks, Dayton Williams steps out of Pass Christian High School student mode and into instructor for "Sharing Shakespeare" with about 32 kids at Pass Christian Middle School. By Tammy Smith, Sun Herald.

ANALYSIS

Moved in advance for Monday editions

UNDER THE CAPITOL DOME-ANALYSIS

JACKSON, Miss. — State Rep. Steve Holland has been saying for years that someone should write about his family's political dynasty in northeast Mississippi. It's a great story, he promises. One that people would love to read. Holland, D-Plantersville, serves the Legislature. His wife, Gloria Holland, is the mayor of Plantersville. One of his brothers, Billy Joe Holland, is a Lee County supervisor. And their mama, their sainted 80-year-old mama, Sadie Holland, is a Lee County Justice Court judge. The Holland family has gotten plenty international attention the past couple of weeks — just not for the reasons that most folks could've imagined. Ap News Analysis. By Emily Wagster Pettus.

MISSISSIPPI SPORTS

DONTAE WALKER GRADUATES

(Also moving on news wires)

JACKSON, Miss. — One-time high school and Mississippi State football star Dontae Walker says he's overcome his past. He tells The Clarion-Ledger (http://on.thec-l.com/10MBTsq) that he didn't make it to the NFL, but the good Lord gave him another chance. .

View article comments Leave a comment