Wallis Watkins

Wallis Watkins is a Baton Rouge native. She received her Bachelor of Arts in Political Science and Philosophy from Louisiana State University in 2013. Soon after, she joined WRKF as an intern and is now reporting on health and health policy for Louisiana's Prescription.

Wallis Watkins / WWNO

Over a third of the public schools in Livingston Parish were damaged by the flooding in Southeast Louisiana last August. While some of those schools have been repaired, others still haven't been able to reopen - like Southside Junior High School, where classes began this new year at a new site - for now. Wallis Watkins reports.

As students settle into Mr. Ivy’s 8th grade Louisiana History class, Principal Wes Partin makes morning announcements.

“We want to welcome all our students back and we’re looking forward to a great spring semester here at our school."

There's just one week left until qualifying, and so far we’ve covered the Governor’s race and the candidates for Attorney General. But little has been said about the four candidates vying for Lieutenant Governor - the person who will be in charge when the Governor is out of state and the head of Louisiana tourism. 


It was the first of many meetings on Tuesday for the Sales Tax Streamlining and Modernization Commission, led by Representative Julie Stokes. 


Jack Hua is a third year medical school student at Tulane University.  "It's such an enormous feat to get into medical school.  We've been working hard for a really long time.  The specialties make so much more money.  Obviously, someone making $150,000 a year is going to be well-off, it's just that when you compare that to $450,000..." he says.


When former state representative Damon Baldone walked into the Terrebonne Parish Registrar’s office on Monday, he didn’t think he was doing anything unprecedented. 


We’re two months into Hurricane season, and so far, it’s been a pretty quiet one. That’s due, in part, to 2015 being an El Nino year. 


“His time in service at the Louisiana legislature was always about the wants and needs of the people he served,” says Representative Katrina Jackson, Chairman of Louisiana's Legislative Black Caucus, of Representative Alfred C. Williams. 


Back in April, New Orleans banned smoking throughout much of the city. On July 1, 2015, Louisiana’s statewide cigarette tax rose by fifty cents. Mike Rogers, CEO of the Smoking Cessation Trust, thinks that’s driving more Louisianians to drop the habit. 

  

Ten years ago, Louisiana’s Public Health lab – where the state Dept. of Health and Hospitals tests for things like disease outbreaks and water safety – was in downtown New Orleans. It was wiped out by Hurricane Katrina and had been operating out of temporary facilities until a new lab opened just recently in Baton Rouge.


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