The Associated Press

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BP Oil Spill
10:05 am
Mon December 16, 2013

Trial Winds Down For Former BP Engineer

A federal trial is drawing to a close for a former BP drilling engineer charged with deleting text messages about the company's response to its massive 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.

Jurors are scheduled to hear closing arguments Monday in Kurt Mix's trial on two counts of obstruction of justice. Mix didn't testify at his trial, which started two weeks ago.

Mix pleaded not guilty to charges he deliberately deleted text messages to and from a supervisor and a BP contractor to stymie a grand jury's probe of the spill.

Health
11:23 am
Thu December 12, 2013

Louisiana Ranked 48th In Annual Health Survey

Louisiana ranked poorly among states in overall health, according to United Health Foundation's 2013 America's Health Rankings.

The Advocate reports that Louisiana came in at No. 48 in the annual rankings, moving up one spot from last year.

The state's strengths included high-immunization coverage among adolescents; low incidences of pertussis, or whooping cough, infections; and little disparity in health status despite differences in education levels.

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Latest News
9:34 pm
Wed December 11, 2013

OSHA Cites Geismar Plant For 6 Safety Violations

The U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration has proposed fines of $99,000 against Williams Olefins for a June explosion that killed two workers and injured 80.

OSHA on Wednesday cited the company for six process safety management standard violations, including one willful. OSHA says a willful violation is one committed with intentional, knowing or voluntary disregard for the law's requirements, or with indifference to worker safety.

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Latest News
12:34 pm
Mon December 9, 2013

Jury Hears From Ex-Cop Charged In Katrina Shooting

A former New Orleans police officer has testified at his retrial that he thought he saw a gun in the hand of the man he shot and fatally wounded outside a strip mall in Hurricane Katrina's aftermath.

David Warren's testimony Monday marks the second time he has tried to explain to a jury why he fired a shot at 31-year-old Henry Glover less than a week after the storm's landfall.

Warren says he feared for his life when he shot Glover, but prosecutors say Glover wasn't armed and didn't pose a threat.

Education
4:02 pm
Tue December 3, 2013

Board Of Ed. Supports Delay In Shift To Tougher Common Core Standards

Lissandra Melo Shutterstock

Louisiana's state school board has backed a two-year delay for some consequences tied to the phase-in of more rigorous educational standards, called Common Core, at public schools.

Members of the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education on Tuesday overwhelmingly supported the changes pushed by Superintendent of Education John White.

The plan will raise accountability standards — like the grading of students, schools and teachers — to match the Common Core in 2015, with a slow adjustment to toughen school grades set to phase in through 2025.

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Latest News
11:02 am
Mon October 28, 2013

Railroad Could Be Rerouted From Old Metairie To Hollygrove

Railroad freight traffic could be shifted of tracks that run through one of Louisiana's most affluent neighborhoods if planners get their way.

But it could take $700 million to make the shift.

State transportation officials are studying whether to reroute freight trains from a track that bisects one of the most affluent parts of Metairie to a combination of tracks that would parallel Earhart Expressway and pass through the Hollygrove neighborhood on New Orleans' western edge.

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Latest News
9:22 am
Thu October 17, 2013

Cruelty Charge Dropped Against Swamp Tour Guide

The Breaux Bridge swamp tour guide that a national animal rights group accused of cruelty to an alligator has been cleared of one charge but admitted to a misdemeanor violation of illegal possession of an alligator.

Chester Cedars, chief prosecutor in St. Martin Parish, tells The Advocate Bryan Champagne was fined $250 plus court costs for the possession charge.

The investigation of Champagne followed a YouTube video that showed him striking the head of an alligator with boat oar while members of a tour watched.

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Latest News
9:04 am
Thu October 17, 2013

Jindal Names 3 To Levee Board That Sued Oil Companies

Gov. Bobby Jindal has named three new members to a Louisiana flood control board that filed a lawsuit against 97 oil and gas companies over damage to coastal wetlands.

Jindal had made clear that anyone who supported the suit would not be re-appointed to the nine-member Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East.

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Education
9:49 am
Wed October 16, 2013

Board Of Education Hears Concerns About Common Core Standards

Groups of parents, Tea Party supporters and teacher union leaders are asking the state's top school board to change course on the use of tougher educational standards called the Common Core.

The debate before the Board of Elementary and Secondary Education was expected to stretch for hours Tuesday night, as more than 70 people requested to speak.

BESE approved the standards three years ago without controversy. But in recent months, the Common Core has become a target for criticism.

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Tropical Storm Karen
11:30 am
Tue October 15, 2013

More Oil Found On Fourchon Beach

The Coast Guard says more than a ton of oil has been discovered in recent days beneath the sand on Fourchon Beach as a result of Tropical Storm Karen.

Officials suspect the mat of oil had been hidden by sand before being uncovered by the effects of the storm, which lingered along the Gulf Coast a little over a week ago, and was discovered during cleanup efforts that began this weekend.

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