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Hurricane Isaac
12:01 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

New Orleans to get $27.3 million from FEMA

New Orleans will receive $27.3 million in grants from the federal government to help cover some of the city's costs related to Hurricane Isaac.

The grants from the Federal Emergency Management Agency were announced Wednesday in a joint news release by Sen. Mary Landrieu, Rep. Cedric Richmond and Mayor Mitch Landrieu. Some of the money will reimburse the city for labor and equipment for a variety of emergency protective measures including police patrols and operation of major drainage systems and pumps.

Latest News
5:01 pm
Wed September 12, 2012

Coast Guard searches for missing kayaker in Gulf

The Coast Guard is searching for a missing kayaker in a more than 600-square-mile area of the Gulf of Mexico near Grand Isle.

Eric Richards, 32, went fishing Monday and was reported missing about 9:30 p.m. Tuesday. The Coast Guard says that after Richards didn't show up at work on Tuesday, a co-worker went to a boat launch on Grand Isle and found his vehicle.

Cmdr. Russ Bowen, coordinator for the search, says two helicopters, two airplanes, a Coast Guard cutter, a 45-foot boat and a shallow-water craft are looking for Richards.

Richards' home town was not available.

Business & Technology
5:00 pm
Wed September 12, 2012

Small business center to open in St. John

The Small Business Administration, Louisiana Department of Economic Development and the Louisiana Small Business Development Centers will open a business recovery center in St. John the Baptist Parish for companies affected by Hurricane Isaac.

The center opens Thursday at 2013 W. Airline Highway in LaPlace.

Its hours will be 8:30 a.m.-5 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays.

4:44 pm
Wed September 12, 2012

I-49 group suspends work on toll study

A group considering tolls to help pay for Interstate 49 through Lafayette has put its work on hold pending a state study on using toll revenue to complete I-49 all the way to New Orleans.

Completing the interstate from Lafayette to New Orleans would cost an estimated $5 billion — a price tag that has been a major roadblock for the project.

Atchafalaya Welcome Center
4:42 pm
Wed September 12, 2012

Welcome center in Butte La Rose closed

The Interstate 10 Atchafalaya Welcome Center in Butte La Rose has been temporarily closed after a power outage disabled the facility's water system.

The state Department of Transportation and Development and the Department of Culture, Recreation and Tourism announced the closure on Tuesday.

The Advocate reports parking areas will remain open, but the welcome center and restrooms will remain closed until water service is restored. Message boards along I-10 have been activated to notify drivers of the closure.

4:40 pm
Wed September 12, 2012

Ormet to lay off 200 at Burnside plant

Ormet Corp. plans to lay off 200 people at its alumina plant in Ascension Parish because of reduced demand caused by rising power rates in Ohio.

The Advocate reports Ormet issued 60-day federal layoff notices Tuesday for the plant in the town of Burnside, which produces the primary raw material used in aluminum production. This comes two weeks after Ormet said it would reduce operations at its aluminum smelter in Hannibal, Ohio, which uses the Burnside alumina.

Ormet reopened the shuttered Burnside alumina plant in late 2011, after the plant had been closed for five years.

Hurricane Isaac
4:38 pm
Wed September 12, 2012

FEMA to open disaster office for St. Helena

St. Helena residents affected by Hurricane Isaac soon will be able to apply for disaster assistance at a recovery center in Greensburg.

Jessica Strickland, Office of Emergency Preparedness director, says the Federal Emergency Management Agency will set up a disaster recovery center at Charlie Overton Park within the next few days.

Until then, Strickland says residents may apply for FEMA assistance by calling 800 621-FEMA or visiting the agency online at

Latest News
4:36 pm
Wed September 12, 2012

National Guardsman killed in traffic accident

State police say a Louisiana National Guardsman from Shreveport was killed in a traffic accident in Natchitoches Parish.

The accident happened Tuesday afternoon on Interstate 49 five miles north of state Highway 6.

Troopers say Sgt. Kevin Dean Weiner was driving a Humvee northbound when it was struck from behind by an 18-wheeler. The 30-year-old Weiner was pronounced dead at the scene. His passenger, Sgt. John C. Fike of Bossier City, suffered moderate injuries in the accident.

Read more
4:34 pm
Wed September 12, 2012

FAA giving $9.4M to Louisiana regional airports

The U.S. Department of Transportation is giving $9.4 million for repairs and other work to improve the safety at 10 regional airports around Louisiana.

Congressman Charles Boustany Jr. says the Lafayette Regional Airport Commission is getting $5.8 million to improve runway safety.

Sen. Mary Landrieu says another $1.2 million will pay to repair the runway at Lakefront Airport in New Orleans.

Higher Education
4:32 pm
Wed September 12, 2012

Southern business grads have new option

Graduates from Southern University's two-year college in Shreveport will now be able to earn a four-year business degree at Grambling State University.

The two colleges announced this new option Tuesday.

Graduates from Southern's Shreveport campus with an associate's degree in business management, event management or accounting can enroll in Grambling State's four-year bachelor's business degree program.

The colleges say all course credits obtained at Southern will be accepted toward the four-year degree.