Feliciana Parish crash
SLAUGHTER — State police say a 33-year-old Baton Rouge man died after the vehicle in which he was riding crashed into a pickup on La. 67 in East Feliciana Parish.
Trooper First Class Nick Manale says 38-year-old Derrick Daniel, of Zachary, was driving a car south on La. 67 shortly after midnight Saturday when a pickup turned from a private drive into Daniel’s path.
The front seat passenger in the car, Kenneth Taylor, was pronounced dead at the scene.
The driver of the pickup, 36-year-old Reggie Gross Jr., of Clinton, was booked with vehicular homicide and failure to yield from a private drive.
Lafayette building public safety complex
LAFAYETTE — By this time next year, the Lafayette Parish Sheriff’s Office plans to move its road crew inmates and those in work release and rehabilitation programs from its downtown jail and annex into its public safety complex now under construction.
Rob Reardon, corrections director, tells The Advocate road crew inmates are lower-security inmates who work in crews under the supervision of deputies.
The public safety complex sits on 29 acres and will house several buildings, including a 31,285 square foot secure housing facility for 216 inmates. Another building will serve as transitional housing, providing 320 beds for those in work release, rehabilitation and re-entry programs.
Construction on the $24 million project began about six months ago and is expected to be complete by July.
Grant to fund SLU nursing program
HAMMOND — Southeastern Louisiana University’s School of Nursing is offering an advanced training program for nursing students pursuing a graduate degree.
The program is being made available through a $637,350 grant from the Health Resources and Services Administration of the Department of Health and Human Services.
University officials said the grant will support 15 students for two years.
Graduate nursing coordinator Lorinda Sealey said the program is designed to increase the number of healthcare providers in underserved areas.
Southeastern’s graduate nursing program is part of a four-university consortium that includes the University of Louisiana-Lafayette, McNeese State University and Nicholls State University.
More details on applying for the training program are available by calling Sealey at 985-549-5045 or by email at email@example.com. General information is available online at www.southeastern.edu/graduatenursing.
Dalai Lama headed to N.O. in 2013
NEW ORLEANS — The Dalai Lama and an entourage of Tibetan monks are heading to New Orleans in May 2013 in a rally of support for communities still recovering from Hurricane Katrina.
The 77-year-old Nobel Peace Prize winner is expected to make at least two public speeches while he’s in the city on May 16 to 18.
The visit of the exiled Tibetan Buddhist spiritual leader will be sponsored by Tulane University’s School of Social Work. Additional details of the visit would be released at a news conference at today.
Katrina struck Aug. 29, 2005, killing about 1,800 people and unleashing a flood that swamped 80 percent of New Orleans.
Baton Rouge area home sales up 24%
BATON ROUGE — Home sales rose 24 percent in the eight-parish Baton Rouge area, with real estate agents selling 650 homes in October compared to 525 that month last year.
Dollar volume rose 20 percent to $121.1 million, according to the figures compiled by the Greater Baton Rouge Association of Realtors.
For the year, home sales are up 15 percent to 6,486 homes sold. Volume is up 12 percent to $1.24 billion.
Lafayette council eyes recreation tax
LAFAYETTE — Lafayette City-Parish Council will consider this week whether to ask voters in April to approve a more than three-fold increase in a recreation property tax.
Parks and Recreation Director Gerald Boudreaux tells The Advocate the proposal does not call for any new recreation projects but is rather an attempt to “right-size” an outdated recreation tax that has not been increased since it first passed in 1961.
The Parks and Recreation Advisory Commission unanimously approved the proposition last month, but the council also must sign off on the proposal before it goes before voters.
The measure, if approved by the council Tuesday, calls for an April 6 vote in the city of Lafayette on whether to replace the existing 1.92-mill recreation tax with a new 7-mill tax.
Nicholls offers online-only studies
THIBODAUX — Nicholls State University will offer online-only degrees in some studies through its Nicholls Online division starting with the spring 2013 semester.
The program is designed to provide flexibility for individuals who have difficulty attending on-campus classes.
Online bachelor’s degree programs will be offered in English, general family and consumer sciences, general studies, history, nursing and sociology. A master’s degree in educational leadership with an educational technology concentration also will be available online.
More information on the program is available online at www.nicholls.edu/nichollsonline or by calling 985-448-4803.
Man killed in wreck after argument
GRAMERCY — Authorities say a 46-year-old man died after wrecking his vehicle on La. Highway 3125 in St. James Parish as result of an argument with one of his passengers.
State police say Leonard Green, of Convent, was driving north near Gramercy around 2:30 a.m. Saturday while fighting with his front-seat passenger, 43-year-old Tracy Young of St. James.
Troopers say Young grabbed and jerked the steering wheel, which forced the car off the road and caused it to overturn several times.
Green was pronounced dead at the scene by the St. James Parish Coroner’s Office.
Young and the rear-seat passenger suffered moderate to severe injuries and were hospitalized.
Kenner balks at airport taxicab rules
KENNER — Kenner is at odds with New Orleans’ new rules for taxis at Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport.
New Orleans now requires credit-card machines, satellite navigation devices, surveillance cameras and working air conditioners in all New Orleans cabs — and in all cabs picking up fares at the New Orleans airport in Kenner.
Drivers licensed in New Orleans failed to keep the rules from taking effect. Now they’re rushing to get the equipment.
Cabbies licensed in Kenner told their City Council last ewek that they won’t be able to meet the Jan. 1 deadline because New Orleans cabs have overwhelmed the limited number of vendors.
Some Kenner operators can’t get an appointment for the work until mid-February, said Councilman Kent Denapolis.
“We’re being phased out,” Kenner cabbie Oscar Marin said.
New Orleans was said to have about 1,600 cabs lined up for the new equipment, roughly 600 of them working the airport. Many are affiliated with major taxi services, making them a critical mass of customers for the equipment vendors. Kenner, by contrast, reportedly has about 350 cabbies, many of them independent operators without the strength of numbers to muscle to the head of the line.
Kenner’s code enforcement director, Tamithia Shaw, said New Orleans officials recently sent over a list of additional vendors for the new equipment. That could provide some relief, but Kenner officials said they will ask New Orleans for an extension.
From The Associated Press.