Wednesday, August 10, 2011
In a state famed for its food, we have a lot going for us. Knowing how our favorite restaurants fare with the health department hasn’t been one of them. Until now. The state Office of Public Health is set to begin posting online certain portions of inspection reports for restaurants, bars and residential and day-care centers — and may have already done so by the time you’re reading this. Heretofore, Louisiana was one of just 10 states that didn’t make restaurant-inspection results available on-line for the public. The website, according to The Advocate, allows the public to see specific “critical” and “noncritical” public health violations found in restaurants, although the data will not be posted until seven days after an inspection takes place. Also included in the database is info on 8,800 stores, 4,700 bars, 2,500 day-care and residential facilities, and others. Not included, however, are overall number or letter grades of the businesses, a practice DHH tried in 2005 and later abandoned. By clicking the “advanced search” tab on the EatSafe website and searching Lafayette, violations, if any, for 1,125 businesses in Lafayette Parish can be found online. The reports cannot be viewed in their entirety, but sifting through the 57 pages of search results in the parish will no doubt prove interesting. Search results on page 52, for example, include Toys-R-Us and Travelodge, along with Took’s Fine Meats, Tokyo Live and Tonic night club, to name a few.
Atlanta-based AGL Resources is nothing if not persistent. The company last week reprised its role as Goliath in its bid to build two more natural gas storage caverns beneath scenic Lake Peigneur in Iberia Parish, running headlong once again into the Save Lake Peigneur folks — the David in this story. AGL’s plan, which was front and center at a meeting last Thursday attended by more than a dozen state lawmakers who serve on the Senate Environmental Quality or House Natural Resources and Environment committees, would require dredging the lake and siphoning unprecedented amounts of groundwater from the Chicot Aquifer, which supplies drinking water to more than 15 parishes. A tip of the hat to residents fighting this plan, but they better have plenty of stones for their slingshot: As Louisianans are painfully aware, the interests of the energy industry are typically served before the environmental concerns of those impacted.
It was an exodus from Genesis by members of the Vermilion Parish School Board recently when board members voted to rescind their earlier — and clearly premature — vote to endorse Dale Bayard, the incumbent District 7 representative on the state Board of Elementary & Secondary Education. Bayard, in our view, is a shill for the Louisiana Family Forum, which, given its druthers, would have science educators in Louisiana public schools teaching Intelligent Design or, worse, creationism alongside Darwinian evolution in biology class. Bayard gave a presentation to the board several weeks ago, after which the board voted to endorse the Sulphur insurance salesman — a hasty decision that flies in the face of the deliberative process. Unaware that Vermilion Parish native and Abbeville High alumna Holly Boffy, a 2010 Louisiana Teacher of the Year, is challenging Bayard for the seat, the board recently backed off from Bayard, rescinded the vote and decided not to issue an endorsement in the race. Boffy, a reform-minded Republican, is challenging some entrenched dogma in public education. Let’s hear what she has to say.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Hopefully he’ll be better prepared today than he was in that Feb. 20 deposition.
They came by the hundreds, arriving from all regions of the state to gather on the steps of our capitol in protest of the Legislature’s long tradition of giving industry the go-ahead to abuse our air, our water and our coastline, all in the name of good economics.
Gov. Bobby Jindal’s recent rhetoric against President Barack Obama has failed to boost his standing among the conservative base.
Louisiana's annual legislative session begins.
The state has hired marksmen to shoot feral hogs from helicopters at two wildlife management areas in south Louisiana.
St. Patty's Day crafts
The former star of Saturday Night Live throws in his 2 cents on the Big Oil lawsuit.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Monday, March 10, 2014:
New menu items ready for the Lenten season
The Cane Fire Film Series screens “MaidenTrip” on Monday, March 10, at the AcA.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The vibe of the tribe done modern
The Louisiana Workforce Commission said Friday that initial claims rose to 2,125 from the previous week's total of 1,964. There were 2,887 initial claims during the comparable week in 2013.
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has stalled action on a $3.5 billion annual school funding formula due to state lawmakers by March 15.
The New Orleans Saints have yet to make it official as of this writing, but popular wide receiver Lance Moore has reportedly been cut by the team to free up salary-cap space on the roster.
While two medical marijuana bills are slated for the upcoming legislative session, what some Louisianans might not know is that the plant was approved for therapeutic use by state lawmakers in 1991.
The agenda is shaping up to be lighter than in previous years. But Jindal is term-limited, with fewer than two years remaining in office, and he saw his last big initiative — a proposed rewrite of Louisiana tax law — collapse without getting a vote in 2013.
Sharper has been held without bail because of an arrest warrant issued by Louisiana authorities accusing him and another man of raping two women.
Two Lafayette men have been revealed by police as the infamous duo behind a caper that shook our fair city to its core.
She’s the daughter of the legendary Johnny Cash, but she’s been a gifted artist in her own right for three decades, and she’s coming to Lafayette.
The Lafayette Parish School Board has received a second letter of demand related to last year’s insurance debacle, this time from Key Benefit Administrators claiming it’s owed $93,000 from the school system.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The Louisiana coastline is vanishing faster than mappers can keep track.
A bill that would have overridden local ordinances prohibiting public and private employers from discriminating against lesbian, gay and transgender people has been pulled within less than a week of being filed.
The panel that selects nominees for a controversial New Orleans area flood control board — a board that is suing more than 90 oil, gas and pipeline companies — is set to discuss legislation affecting its independence.
State prison officials cannot keep secret the seller and manufacturer of the two drugs purchased for executions at the Louisiana State Penitentiary, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.
State lawmakers will not appeal a judge's ruling that it was improper to use $3.7 million from a probation and parole officers' retirement fund to balance the state's operating budget.
Prepare yourselves for sun