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Higher Education
11:52 am
Mon August 6, 2012

Summer enrollment drops at NE La. colleges

Colleges and universities across northeastern Louisiana have seen decreases in summer enrollment this year. Officials believe it's likely because of the economy and the loss of certain federal grant funding offered during the summer.

Summer Pell Grants, which provided need-based grants to low-income undergraduate and certain post-baccalaureate students, were eliminated from last year's federal budget because of financial constraints.

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ULL Student Union
11:36 am
Mon August 6, 2012

ULL student union project begins soon

The long-awaited renovations to University of Louisiana at Lafayette's student union are scheduled to begin in a few weeks.

By the time the semester starts Aug. 20, William Crist, campus facilities manager, tells The Advocate the only service open in the building will be the bookstore.

Crist says construction will start around Aug. 15 and the completion date as of right now is August of 2014.

Students gave their support to the update and expansion of the building about 10 years ago when they approved a $55 fee per semester dedicated to the renovation project.

Marsh Liquefies
11:32 am
Mon August 6, 2012

Highway 70 reopens near acre of liquefied swampland

NAPOLEONVILLE — Ascension Parish officials have reopened a four-mile section of highway near an acre of swampland that liquefied into soupy muck, toppling tall bald cypress trees and bending a 400-foot-long section of a natural gas pipeline toward the liquid acre.

Marine Corps Support Facility Opening
10:00 am
Mon August 6, 2012

Marines to mark new command in New Orleans

The Marine Forces Reserve plans ceremonies on Monday to formally activate the Force Headquarters Group.

The ceremonies will take place at 10 a.m. at the Marine Corps Support Facility in New Orleans.

Force Headquarters Group was formed July 18 and is commanded by Maj. Gen. Tracy Garrett. The organization handles administrative and operational command of six Marine Reserve units.

Garrett will be transferring command to Brig. Gen. Paul Lebidine.

West Nile Virus
2:30 pm
Fri August 3, 2012

Two West Nile deaths reported in Louisiana

Two people have died in Louisiana as a result of West Nile Virus infections.

Louisiana's health department confirmed this week's deaths, the first West Nile deaths in the state since 2008, when one person died.

The health department also said the number of overall West Nile infections in the state this year rose by 21 this week for a total of 53.

West Nile infections usually cause no symptoms or relatively mild flu-like symptoms. But, in some cases, the mosquito-borne virus causes life-threatening brain or spinal cord diseases.

Environment
2:27 pm
Fri August 3, 2012

Gas bubbles-up in Bayou Corne community

Officials in Assumption Parish say gas bubbles in Bayou Corne are producing a diesel-like odor.

An area of slurry was found Friday in a swampy area between Grand Bayou and Bayou Corne, about a half mile from Louisiana Highway 70. The area is at least 2,500 feet from the nearest home, officials say.

State police are monitoring the area, seeking possible additional bubbling sites.

Officials say they don't expect any highways to be closed or evacuations ordered as a result of the increased monitoring.

Jefferson Parish Sheriff's Office
2:24 pm
Fri August 3, 2012

Former Jefferson deputy booked with malfeasance

A former Jefferson Parish sheriff's deputy has been booked with malfeasance.

Officials say 56-year-old Robert Hoobler of Gretna was arrested Thursday over an incident in November in which Hoobler is accused using a stun gun against a suspect multiple times.

Col. John Fortunato says Hoobler had arrested a person wanted for a violation of a protective order, and had placed the suspect into the rear seat of his marked unit. Fortunato says while driving to the parish jail, the suspect removed his seat belt, turned sideways and began kicking the rear door of the police car.

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Community
2:20 pm
Fri August 3, 2012

Nicholls to offer '1st generation' scholarships

Nicholls State University will offer 24 scholarships this fall exclusively to students who are the first in their family to attend college.

The scholarships will range from $500 to $1,250 for qualifying students. The Daily Comet reports that money for Nicholls' First-Generation Endowed Undergraduate Scholarship Program will come from Board of Regents. There will be matching funds from Thibodaux-area contributors.

Oyster Season
2:19 pm
Fri August 3, 2012

Wildlife commission sets 2012-13 oyster season

The Louisiana Wildlife and Fisheries Commission has set the 2012-13 oyster seasons based on oyster stock assessments provided by state Department of Wildlife and Fisheries biologists and the public.

Little Lake Public Oyster Seed Grounds and the Vermilion/East and West Cote Blanche/Atchafalaya Bay Public Oyster Seed Grounds will open at one-half hour before sunrise on Wednesday, Sept. 5.

Riverboats
12:20 pm
Fri August 3, 2012

Queen of the Mississippi to launch service

A comeback for old-fashioned paddlewheel riverboat travel on the Mississippi River continues in New Orleans this weekend with the departure from New Orleans of the Queen of the Mississippi, a brand new, quintuple-decked vessel mixing 19th century trappings meant to evoke the Mark Twain era with modern amenities including internet access, satellite television, an exercise area and a putting green.

American Cruise Lines has set Saturday as the date for its first seven-night round trip to Vicksburg, Miss.

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