The CDC says the Omicron variant is now the dominant strain in the US and health officials in Louisiana say they believe the strain is the beginning of a new surge in the state. Brooke Thorington has more.
Cut 1 (33) “…I’m Brooke Thorington.”
The price tag for improving Louisiana’s roadways keeps rising and that’s causing a lot of number crunching at the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development. More from Dave Brannen.
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Louisiana is among the state rated highest for the integrity of our elections. Kevin Gallagher has more…:
Cut 3 (31) “….I’m Kevin Gallagher.”
The School of Engineering at the University of New Orleans receives the largest gift to an academic college in the school’s history. UNO Spokesperson Adam Norris says Dr. Bobby and Lori Savoie have generously donated $5 million to the school.
Cut 4 (07) “….history.”
Savoie completed his doctorate from UNO in engineering and applied science in 2009. Norris says the school is now known as the Dr. Robert A Savoie College of Engineering and the donation will allow others to receive degrees from the university.
Cut 5 (12) “…and students.”
Norris says that Savoie has stated the gift is not about what UNO has done in the past but what the financial gift can bring to the future of UNO students, faculty, and staff.
Cut 6 (11) “..years to come.”
The Dr. Robert A Savoie College of Engineering offers the only civil engineering, mechanical engineering, and electrical engineering programs in metro New Orleans.
As the Omicron variant is deemed the dominant variant in the US officials with the Louisiana Department of Health say the recent dramatic increase in COVID cases in such a short period is indicative of the beginning of a new surge. State Epidemiologist Dr. Theresa Sokol says sequencing indicates Omicron will be considered the dominant variant in Louisiana and COVID cases are on the rise.
Cut 7 (11) “…to last.”
Not only are case numbers and positivity rates increasing in Louisiana, but Sokol says hospitalizations are also showing a striking increase in a short period of time. Four days ago, 207 COVID patients were reported, then 226. On Monday there were 241 and Tuesday 265 were in the hospital.
Cut 8 (05) “…every day.”
We tend to see a sharp increase in case numbers following holiday gatherings and with the Omicron variant on the cusp of being the new dominant strain in Louisiana, Sokol says it’s imperative we all practice COVID mitigation over the holidays, more individuals get vaccinated and those who are eligible get boosted.
Cut 9 (12) “…vaccinated people.”
With mild weather forecast for Christmas Day, health officials urge you to gather outdoors if you are spending the holiday with those outside of your immediate household.
Inflation is expected to take a hit on roadway projects in Louisiana. That word comes from DOTD Transportation Secretary Shawn Wilson who says two projects have already been rejected, including plans to repair I-20 through Bossier City because the projected price tag has increased nearly 50 percent.
Cut 10 (12) “…the COVID pandemic.”
No decision has been made on when the project might be re-bid.
Wilson says similar pricing scenarios are expected to play out in the near future leading to a potential change in plans to widen I-10 and construction of a new Mississippi River bridge.
Cut 11 (11) “…time of investment.”
Wilson says as DOTD moves forward with improving the state’s roadway infrastructure, there will have to be give-and-take on considering the bids submitted and the overall projects themselves.
Cut 12 (11) “…these larger bids.”
Wilson says the primary factors driving costs up are labor and raw materials and he expects the situation to become more difficult moving forward.
Louisiana scores among the Top Ten states in the U.S. for the integrity of its elections. Secretary of state Kyle Ardoin oversees elections and voting. He says the ranking by the Heritage Foundation is a testament to the hard work of his staff, and local registrars…:
Cut 13 (12) “…voter registration.”
The 2021 Election Integrity Scorecard rated the state for implementing voter ID, management of absentee voting, vote counting practices and verification of identity and citizenship. Ardoin says it’s pleasing to have both sides of the political fence agree that Louisiana is doing a good job…:
Cut 14 (12) “…are happy as well.”
Ardoin says few states are faced with having to overcome election schedule deviations due to natural disasters, but it’s something his people do regularly and well…:
Cut 15 (09) “…all around the state.”
Gary Goff is the new head football coach at McNeese after a successful stint at Division Two Valdosta State, where he led Blazers to a 22-and-3 record and a National Championship appearance. Goff says this is a special moment for him and his family
Cut 16 (13) “… doing it”
Goff also coached eight seasons at Tiffin University in Ohio and is 60-53 in ten playing seasons of coaching. He started his college coaching career as a wide receivers coach at Southeastern Louisiana from 2003-04. He plans to run the air raid offense at McNeese…
Cut 17 (21) “ air raid offense”
The Saints upset win over Tampa Bay on Sunday goes down as one of the more improbable victories in team history. They did without their head coach, Sean Payton and also both starting offensive tackles were out because of injuries. Acting head coach Dennis Allen says it was a great win, but they have another game to worry about on Monday…
Cut 18 (18) “ ..Miami”
The Saints recorded four sacks on Sunday night. Defensive end Marcus Davenport got to Tom Brady once and now has a career-high 6.5 sacks on the season. Allen says Davenport keeps getting better every year…
Cut 19 (21) “ the past”