Kelly Connelly

Kelly grew up in Baton Rouge. She started out in radio at Baton Rouge High where she was first on air at WBRH and KBRH. While studying film and politics at Hendrix College, she reported and hosted for KUAR in Little Rock, AK. She then moved on to KUT in Austin, TX. She misses the dry air, live music at Studio 1A and breakfast tacos, but is happy for crawfish and non-ironic use of Mardi Gras beads.

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NPR Story
5:03 am
Thu August 15, 2013

Lawmakers Poke Holes in Flood Protection Board Lawsuit

Originally published on Thu August 15, 2013 6:54 pm

Taxpayers may be on the hook for hundreds of thousands of dollars if the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East has to withdraw its lawsuit against oil and gas companies.

SLFPA-E met opposition from the legislature’s Joint Transportation Committee Wednesday, as the committee gathered information from the authority on the suit, also hearing opposing testimony from Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority head Garret Graves.

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NPR Story
5:03 am
Thu August 15, 2013

Lawmakers Poke Holes in Flood Protection Board Lawsuit

Taxpayers may be on the line for hundreds of thousands of dollars if the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority - East has to withdraw its lawsuit against oil and gas companies.

SLFPA-E met opposition from the legislature’s Joint Transportation Committee Wednesday, as the committee gathered information from the authority on the suit, also hearing opposing testimony from Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority head Garret Graves.

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WRKF
2:10 pm
Thu July 18, 2013

Debt on Bridge to Grand Isle, Port Fourchon in Danger of Default

In December, the forecasted revenue for the LA1 toll-bridge will be less than the bill the state owes that month on the borrowed money it took to build it. Toll revenue is by statute bound to pay off the bonds. If the state defaults on the bridge, it could negatively effect the entire state's credit rating.

The LA1 bridge is the only way to access Port Fourchon and Grande Isle by car. The bridge was built after hurricanes wiped out parts of the unelevated road now called "Old LA1."

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WRKF
12:18 pm
Tue July 16, 2013

US Senate Committee Reconsiders Flood Insurance Hikes

Louisianians may find solace from impending increases in flood insurance rates as Sen. Mary Landrieu’s bill to prevent those hikes heads to the Senate Appropriations Committee for consideration at its Thursday meeting.

Landrieu chairs the Homeland Security Subcommittee of Appropriations, which passed the bill to the larger body Tuesday.

The measures are included in the Homeland Security Appropriations bill for next fiscal year. Called the Strengthen, Modernize and Reform the National Flood Insurance Program, or SMART NFIP, the bill would postpone parts of last year’s Biggert-Waters Act.

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WRKF
11:33 am
Tue July 16, 2013

Republicans Gain Supermajority in State Senate

Another Louisiana State Senator has jumped the aisle to the Republican party.

Sen. Rick Ward, who represents parts of the Capitol Region, from Port Allen into Assumption Parish, gives the Republicans a supermajority in the Senate. Several kinds of measures are constitutionally required to pass with a two-thirds vote, like tax increases and procedural items after a certain date near the end of the session.

The Louisiana House alliance of fiscally conservative Republicans and Democrats may have a harder time facing the Senate next session.

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WRKF
5:32 am
Tue July 16, 2013

Why Finding Oil in Fish Organs Isn't as Bad as it Looks

Kelly Connelly, WRKF

Originally published on Fri October 18, 2013 12:26 am

Environmental remediation scientists at LSU’s School of the Coast and Environment have found remnants of crude oil in the hearts of pogy that live off Grand Isle.

Pogy, a baitfish more officially called menhaden, make up the second largest commercial catch in the United States. They’re not only resold as baitfish, but they’re also processed into fish oil and fish meal, making their way into vitamins, cosmetics and livestock feeds.

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WRKF
5:32 am
Tue July 9, 2013

The Last Bus to New Orleans

Originally published on Thu July 11, 2013 9:01 am

LA Swift got its start after Hurricane Katrina, shuttling evacuees and recovery workers between the Crescent and Capitol cities.

Ridership spiked after the storm, dropped off, and is now steadily growing. But the riders are commuters, using the bus to get to work.

The bus ran out of funding in June, but the service provider agreed to keep rolling another month. Long-time rider MiLisa York, who’s started a petition to keep the bus going long-term.

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NPR Story
4:24 pm
Tue July 2, 2013

Speaker Against Special Session

Leadership of the Louisiana state legislature is speaking out against the Democrat minority push to call a special veto session.

Democrats want a session to address Governor Jindal’s line-item vetoes to strike funding to expand care for the developmentally disabled.

House Speaker Chuck Kleckley said in a statement that a veto session could produce unintended consequences.

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WRKF
3:19 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

State Lawmakers To Retry Cash Balance Plan

The contentious plan to revamp the state’s floundering retirement systems was overturned in State Supreme Court on Friday. 

The high court knocked down the law not because of content, but because of how it passed. State law requires a supermajority for this kind of bill to progress. The legislature sent this one to the governor’s desk with only the majority’s approval.

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WRKF
5:12 pm
Wed June 26, 2013

What Do The DOMA And Prop. 8 Rulings Mean For Louisiana?

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 5:57 am

The US Supreme Court may have recognized all marriage as equal Wednesday, but same-sex couple still can’t get married in Louisiana. Same-sex marriages that are valid in other states will not be recognized by the state if the couple chooses to move to Louisiana.

So what does this mean for Louisiana? 

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