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Sunday, May 19, 2019



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News in Brief- May 1, 2019

News in Brief- May 1, 2019

Mississippi counts 75 tornadoes for year, 43 for April 18

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — With three more tornadoes confirmed Friday from an April 18 outbreak, the National Weather Service now says 43 tornadoes hit Mississippi that day, and 75 for the year.

The one-day amount alone equals Mississippi's annual average of 43 tornadoes during the years 1991 through 2010. The most tornadoes ever recorded in a single year in the state were 109 in 2008.

Forecasters also confirmed on Friday that a tornado with top winds of 90 mph hit the Kiln area on the Mississippi Gulf Coast on Thursday.

MEMA said damages from the three sets of storms stretch across 60 of Mississippi's 82 counties.

Central Mississippi's status as the nation's tornado capital is not new. Over 10 years beginning in 2009 and ending in 2018, the Jackson office issued 1,033 tornado warnings. That's more than 200 more than the second-highest office in Slidell, Louisiana. That office covers southeast Louisiana, but also the southern fringes of Mississippi.

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Nicholls State to create new coastal studies center

THIBODAUX, La. (AP) — Nicholls State is creating a new coastal studies center.

The Courier reports the center will focus its studies on the Terrebonne and Atchafalaya basins, creating models to aid coastal protection projects in the region.

Gov. John Bel Edwards, Coastal Protection and Restoration Authority head Chip Kline and Nicholls President Jay Clune signed a memorandum of understanding Monday to make the newly formed partnership official.

Clune says the partnership is "vitally important" as Nicholls' student body largely comes from Houma, Raceland and Grand Isle areas that are in jeopardy due to land loss and coastal erosion issues.

No timeline for the creation of the center has been provided.

Information from: The Courier, http://www.houmatoday.com

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Corps: Rising Mississippi might prompt spillway reopening

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Army Corps of Engineers says the rising Mississippi River could bring something unprecedented: reopening a historic Louisiana flood control structure.

Spokesman Rickey Boyett tells WVUE-TV there's a real chance the Corps might have to reopen the Bonnet Carre Spillway. It was closed April 11. Boyett says it's never been opened twice in one year.

The National Weather Service says the river's expected to reach 16.9 feet on May 11 at a New Orleans gauge where 17 feet generally corresponds with a spillway opening.

Boyett says flow projections are expected later this week.

The spillway's opened to relieve stress on New Orleans levees when the Mississippi flows at 1.25 million cubic feet per second, fast enough to fill the Superdome in less than two minutes.

Information from: WVUE-TV, http://fox8live.com

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Lawmakers reject changes to Louisiana homestead exemption

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana's homestead exemption will stay as is, after lawmakers refused to give local government the ability to lessen the property tax break treasured by homeowners.

The House Ways and Means Committee voted 9 to 3 against the proposal by Republican Rep. Steve Carter of Baton Rouge.

Louisiana exempts the first $75,000 value of an individual's home from property taxes. Carter's constitutional amendment would have allowed parish governments to lower that exemption in their parishes, if approved by voters there.

Carter says he wanted to give local government more flexibility to generate revenue for operations. He stressed that voters would have to agree.

Opponents objected to the possibility of raising taxes on homeowners. Monroe Republican Rep. Jay Morris called it an "attack on the middle class."

House Bill 12: www.legis.la.gov