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News in Brief- April 11, 2018

News in Brief- April 11, 2018

Average price of US gas rises 8 cents, to $2.74 a gallon

CAMARILLO, Calif. (AP) — The average U.S. price of regular-grade gasoline shot up 8 cents a gallon over the past two weeks to $2.74.

Industry analyst Trilby Lundberg said Sunday the increase was driven primarily by rising crude oil prices.

The current gas price is 30 cents above where it was a year ago.

The highest average price in the contiguous 48 states was $3.63 in the San Francisco Bay area. The lowest was $2.37 in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

The average price for diesel fuel rose three cents, to $3.04.

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National WW2 Museum: 100,592 visitors set 1-month record

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The National World War II Museum says it has shattered its record for the number of visitors in one month.

The museum in New Orleans says 100,592 guests checked out its displays during March. That's up 18 percent from the 84,858 visitors who set the previous record in March 2017.

A news release says nearly 6.5 million visitors and more than 715,000 students have come to the museum since it opened on June 6, 2000.

President and CEO Stephen Watson says going over 100,000 visitors in a month is a major milestone for the museum.

It currently has five pavilions with two more planned. A conference center hotel is also in the works.

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Company describes plans for proposed Tangipahoa casino

HAMMOND, La. (AP) — The Los Angeles-based company Peninsula Pacific says a new casino it hopes to build in Tangipahoa Parish in Louisiana would have an indoor and outdoor event center, a farmer's market buffet and a potential bass fishing tournament dock.

The company already owns one of the state's 15 riverboat casino licenses for Diamond Jacks Casino & Hotel in Bossier City but would like to open a casino in Tangipahoa Parish instead.

CEO Brent Stevens says that location would allow them to capture some of the gambling traffic that currently goes to Mississippi.

Moving the license first requires legislative and voter approval.

The proposed facility would include a 27,000-square-foot gaming floor with about 800 slot machines and 25 card tables, Stevens said. To start, there would be one hotel with 200 rooms but Stevens said he is trying to recruit other developers to build an additional two more hotels at the same location.

He said the casino is expected to produce 500 permanent jobs with an average of $35,000 a year in salary and benefits per job.

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Audit: Louisiana has more state boards than neighbor states

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana has more state-created boards and commissions than any other Southeastern state.

A Legislative Auditor's Office review found Louisiana had 464 boards and commissions for the financial year that ended June 30.

The auditor's office says the panels spent $1 million in board member per diem expenses, $1.6 million on salaries and $1.5 million for travel. Much of the money comes from fees or other dedicated sources.

The Advocate reports the annual audit found the number of boards is down from 485 panels recorded in 2013. Nineteen boards were deemed inactive.

The boards that paid the most in salaries were the Public Service Commission, the Tax Commission, the Gaming Control Board, the Louisiana Lottery Corporation Board of Directors and the Board of Tax Appeals.

Information from: The Advocate, http://theadvocate.com

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Oklahoma gains 5 rigs as US rig count rises to 1,003

HOUSTON (AP) — The number of rigs exploring for oil and natural gas in the U.S. increased by 10 this week to 1,003.

At this time a year ago there were 839 active rigs.

Houston oilfield services company Baker Hughes reported Friday that 808 rigs drilled for oil this week and 194 for gas. One was listed as miscellaneous.

Among major oil- and gas-producing states, Oklahoma added five rigs. New Mexico tacked on three, while Kansas and Texas each gained two. North Dakota, Ohio, Utah and West Virginia increased by one each.

Louisiana lost two rigs, while Alaska, Colorado, Pennsylvania and Wyoming dropped one each.

Arkansas and California were unchanged.

The U.S. rig count peaked at 4,530 in 1981. It bottomed out in May of 2016 at 404.