Governor Bobby Jindal has announced that the only greater public office he wishes to occupy in the future is President of the United States. According to a news release, Jindal indicated that he would either serve as President or leave politics altogether. Jindal also said that he would not seek office in the Senate nor the House. Jindal has not formally decided that he will run for president in 2016 and said that a formal decision should be made following the holiday season. However, many politicians are giving Jindalís term as governor middle-ground marks. On a scale of 1 to 10, the governor has received scores in the 4-7 range.
A Sabine Parish inmate who escaped early Monday morning from the Sabine Parish Detention Center after freeing himself from restraints and running past a deputy is back in custody. 31-year-old Mack H. Johnson Jr., of Many, returned to the detention center around 5:30 p.m. Deputies say Johnson will face additional charges of simple escape, battery of a police officer and negligent injury. Johnson was in custody because of pending charges of theft and forgery. Johnson had been free since around 3:30 a.m. when he was able to wrestle away from a deputy and run away.
A single vehicle crash killed two people and seriously injured two others Friday night. The crash occurred at about 6:00 p.m. on I-49 south of LA Hwy. 119 just before 6:00 p.m. The crash involved a 2003 Ford Explorer, driven by 38-year-old Carl J. Bergeron of Opelousas, LA. The Ford was northbound on I-49 when one of the tires blew out. Bergeron lost control causing the vehicle to run off the road and travel into the median. The car began to overturn before entering the southbound lanes of I-49 and coming to a rest on the shoulder. Bergeron and 13 year-old Hailey Castille were both transported to the Rapides Regional Trauma Center, and were later pronounced dead. Two passenters received moderate injuries.
State health officials, emergency responders and the National Guard have developed a comprehensive plan for dealing with Ebola, should Louisiana have an outbreak of the virus. Kevin Davis, director of the Governorís Office of Homeland Security, told a House committee dealing with homeland security matters Thursday the plan is being distributed and training is being offered to those who would first come in contact with a victim and those who would provide treatment. Senator David Vitter told the committee he believes the problem could be contained and not spread in the United States if President Barack Obama would place travel restrictions on flights from countries where Ebola is a problem. He said the refusal to do so "is inexcusable." So far, eight Ebola cases have been reported in the U.S. Only one death has been reported.
Louisiana delinquent taxpayers have until November 14, to pay off delinquent tax bills without having to pay all the penalties or interest on the debt. The program is intended to provide an incentive for people to pay the government the money they owe more quickly than they would have otherwise. Louisiana's state budget is depending on the tax amnesty to bring in at least $100 million. If it falls short, there will could be midyear cuts to the state's higher education and health care spending. Secretary Tim Barfield of the Department of Revenue and Taxation is fairly confident the program will reach the $100 million goal. Last year's amnesty program brought in about $435 million.
Voters trying to sort through the details of 14 constitutional amendments on the Nov. 4 ballot have an online guide they can consult. The nonpartisan Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana, known as PAR, has released its online informational guide on the proposals to rewrite the state constitution. The amendments can be dense, dealing with health care funding changes, property taxes and transportation financing. This yearís ballot contains one of the largest number of amendments voters have ever faced at once. PARís guide provides background information for each amendment, describes the change and offers arguments both in support and opposition. It also includes a checklist, so voters can decide which amendments they support or oppoe and take that list into the voting booth. The guide is available at www.parlouisiana.com.
Winn Parish Sheriff's Department Arrest Report:
On Wednesday, October 15, the Winn Parish Sheriff's Department arrested Christy Ingles, of Winnfield. Ingles was charged with distribution of methamphetamine. On Thursday, October 16, Humberto Rodriguez, of Winnfield, was arrested for careless operation and indecent behavior with a juvenile. Also arrested Thursday was Reginald Thomas, of Winnfield, on a warrant for failure to appear. Caleb Cummings, of Winnfield, was arrested Thursday for violation of bond restriction. Christopher Stevenson, of Winnfield, was arrested on a warrant for failure to appear. Also arrested was Vernon McCoy, of Van Nuys, California, for possession of cocaine.Early voting for the November 4 election will continue until Tuesday, October 28 in the Registrar of Voters Office in the Winn Parish Courthouse. The hours for early voting will be 8:30 a.m. until 6:00 p.m. each day, with no early voting on Sunday.
Drive-thru flu shots will be available at the Winn Parish Office of Public Health, located at 301 West Main Street. Flu shots for persons at least 6 months old will be given on Friday, October 24, from 8:00 a.m. until 11:00 a.m., and from 1:00 p.m. until 3:00 p.m. There will be a maximum out-of-pocket expense of $10.00, and there will be no cost for persons with a Medicare or Medicaid card. Those who have other insurance are asked to bring their card.The next meeting of the Louisiana Crime Victims Reparations Board will be on Tuesday, November 11, at 9:00 a.m., at the Louisiana Commission on Law Enforcement Office, at 602 North Fifth Street in Baton Rouge. The public is invited to attend this meeting, and assistance will be provided to those who need special accommodations in order to attend this meeting. For more information, persons may call 225.342.1500
The Juanita Pharr Cancer Support Group meets on the first Friday of each month at 12:00 noon for a dutch treat meeting. All cancer survivors and caretakers are invited. There is a different meeting place each month, and persons may contact Maxine Godman for more information at 628-3858.