Louisiana news briefs
Corps meetings on surge, wetlands
LAKE CHARLES (AP) — The Army Corps of Engineers is taking public comment Tuesday in Lake Charles and Thursday in Abbeville about its plan to reduce storm surge and restore wetlands in southwest Louisiana.
The corps is taking public comment through Jan. 26 on the study, which covers 4,700 square miles in Calcasieu, Cameron and Vermilion parishes.
Both meetings will start at 6 p.m. with an open house. The first is at the Lake Charles Civic Center, the second at the Abbeville branch of the Vermilion Parish Library.
The plan calls for measures such as raising homes, floodproofing, and some buyouts to reduce potential damages, and recommends restoring marshes, protecting shorelines and reforesting cheniers.
The Corps will also accept mailed and emailed written comments.
The draft report is online at: www.mvn.usace.army.mil/About/Projects/SouthwestCoastal.aspx.
Raceland man cited
BATON ROUGE (AP) — A Raceland man faces deer hunting violations that state wildlife and fisheries agents say occurred last month on Eagle Island.
Eric Savoie, 37, was cited for two counts of hunting or taking deer during illegal hours, failing to tag deer, over limit of deer, taking deer illegally during an open season, hunting deer without a big game license and hunting with an unplugged shotgun.
Agents also seized two rifles and a shotgun.
The department said in a news release Tuesday that Savoie admitted, during questioning, to harvesting two antlerless deer during illegal hours Dec. 20 and attempted to harvest more deer illegally on the night of Dec. 25.
Workers to get raises
HOUMA (AP) — Nearly 700 Terrebonne government workers will receive a 2 percent pay raise this year if the Parish Council approves the measure later this month.
Council members discussed the proposal during committee meetings Monday and will introduce the proposed ordinance during a meeting scheduled Wednesday night.
The council is expected to cast a final vote on the raises after a public hearing Jan. 22.
The parish’s budget calls for $207 million in spending, up about 2 percent from last year’s $203 million. The raises are included in the budget and will cost taxpayers about $450,000 combined.
Wreck kills man
SULPHUR (AP) — Authorities say a 19-year-old Vinton man died in a single-vehicle accident in Sulphur.
Calcasieu Parish sheriff’s deputies say Davin L. Ackel was killed Tuesday when his truck ran off the road and struck several trees. Ackel was pronounced dead at the scene.
His passenger, a 16-year-old girl, was ejected from the truck. She was taken to a local hospital and is in serious condition.
Deputies say speed is believed to be a contributing factor in the crash.
TEDA board approves plan to cease operations
HOUMA (AP) — The Terrebonne Economic Development Authority board has agreed to a plan to wind down its operations and return its nearly $1 million in reserves to the parish.
The future of the organization has been in question since the Terrebonne Parish Council last year reallocated TEDA’s primary source of revenue to begin economic development efforts under the parish administration.
Though the reallocated occupation license money served as nearly 95 percent of TEDA’s annual revenue, there was at least some desire by board members to continue operations paid for by the organization’s reserves.
After a preliminary budget failed approval, the board set up a committee Tuesday to plan winding down the agency.