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Wednesday, December 4, 2019

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News in Brief- November 13, 2019

News in Brief- November 13, 2019

Essence Fest staying in New Orleans

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Essence Festival will be returning to New Orleans for at least the next five years.

News outlets report New Orleans Mayor LaToya Cantrell and Gov. John Bel Edwards recently announced the contract extension to 2024. This year's festival, the 25th overall, was the last under the previous extension.

The festival traditionally is held on the Fourth of July weekend and features empowerment sessions and musical performances, some by the biggest named artists. In 2020, Essence will stick to its traditional three nights of concerts in the Louisiana Superdome but will expand its daytime events throughout the city to five days, July 1-5.

Essence Communications Inc. CEO Michelle Ebanks says New Orleans is "our home" and there is "tremendous recognition of what this festival has meant to the community."


Sheriff: Louisiana man rode electric cart from bar to bar

HOUMA, La. (AP) — A Louisiana man has avoided a driving while intoxicated charge by operating an electric-powered shopping cart to get from one bar to another.

A news release from the Terrebonne Parish Sheriff's Office says 32-year-old Brice Kendell Williams is accused of taking the cart Sunday from a Walmart in Houma to a bar about half a mile away. Col. Terry Daigre says a deputy found the cart parked between two cars in the bar's parking lot.

The sheriff's office says Williams told the deputy he thought he might get charged with DWI if he drove his own vehicle from bar to bar.

Williams was arrested nevertheless, and charged with felony "unauthorized use of a movable."


19.8% of Louisiana residents live in poverty, most in U.S.

THE CENTER SQUARE - Louisiana residents living below the poverty line in 2017-18 made up 19.8 percent of the state’s population, the highest rank among the 50 states and the District of Columbia, according to new Census Bureau data.

The state’s poverty rate was up 0.4 percentage points from the two-year average of 2015-16 (19.4 percent), the Census Bureau reported.

Nationwide, the median household income stood at $63,179 last year, which was unchanged from 2017, according to the analysis. But the U.S. poverty rate did tick down 0.5 percent from 2017 to 2018, to 11.8 percent, the study found.

The share of the U.S. population with health insurance in 2018, however, was 91.5 percent, compared to 92.1 percent a year earlier, the study says.

The Census Bureau’s 2018 numbers also showed that the national poverty rate had declined for the fourth year in a row.


Louisiana seeing more foster care children adopted

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana's social services agency says 893 children in foster care were adopted over the last year.

The Department of Children and Family Services says that's the second-highest number of adoptions from foster care in a single year in state history, falling just below last year's record of 912.

The latest numbers are from the federal budget year that ran from Oct. 1, 2018, through Sept. 30.

The department says the 893 children were adopted into 661 families.

Of those families, 27% percent adopted more than one child, including 164 families who adopted siblings.

First lady Donna Edwards hosted an adoption celebration with the families last Thursday at the governor's mansion.