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Latest News
1:14 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

T-shirt, wristband sales will fund aid for Tulane football player

Tulane University says two of its seniors have designed a T-shirt and wristband bearing the name and jersey number of Green Wave football player Devon Walker.

Brad Girson and Jesse Schwartz started their own clothing line as sophomores. Now, the university says, net proceeds from sales of the shirts and wristbands will be donated to a fund established for Walker.

Walker suffered a cervical spine fracture Saturday during Tulane's game against Tulsa.

Hurricane Isaac
12:14 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

Assumption wildlife refuge reopens after Isaac

Elm Hall, a state wildlife refuge about 5 miles west of Napoleonville in Assumption Parish, opens again after it was closed because of Hurricane Isaac.

The Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries says the refuge was reopened to the public on Wednesday.

Elm Hall is a 2,839-acre area that is accessible only by boat. The refuge sits on the northeast corner of Lake Verret.

Meanwhile Elmer's Island, a public beach facing the Gulf of Mexico in Jefferson Parish, remains closed after Isaac's surge exposed buried tar mats.

Business & Technology
12:11 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

Forum Energy Technologies to expand

Forum Energy Technologies says it plans to build a new 150,000-square-foot facility in St. Martin Parish to produce onshore and offshore drilling equipment for global customers.

Forum Energy CEO Cris Gaut says the $19 million project will replace an existing facility in nearby Broussard. The project will retain 203 existing jobs and create 125 new direct jobs with average annual salaries of more than $45,000, plus benefits. State economic development officials estimate the project will also create an additional 300 new indirect jobs.

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Public Service Commission
12:06 pm
Thu September 13, 2012

Utilities Commission to conduct outages hearing

The state's public utilities commission has decided to conduct an investigative hearing on the power outages that plagued Louisiana for days after Hurricane Isaac lashed the state with wind-driven rains.

Commissioner Eric Skrmetta said Wednesday it was the duty of the Public Service Commission to ask hard questions of the utility companies after more than 900,000 residents were left without electricity.

He said the utility companies performed well at restoring power to consumers once the storm had abated but he had questions about their pre-storm response.

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.

I-49
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.

Business
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.

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