LRN PM Newscall February 23

For the month of January COVID cases in Louisiana among nursing residents and staff increased dramatically. Brooke Thorington has more.

Cut 1 (32) “…I’m Brooke Thorington.”


Beginning as early as May, Louisiana Entergy customers will see an 8-to-10 dollar surcharge to pay for the repair costs from recent hurricanes and last February’s winter storm. Jeff Palermo has the story…

Cut 2 (33)…I’m Jeff Palermo”  


AARP data shows an alarming increase in COVID transmission among Louisiana nursing homes for the month of January.  AARP State Director Denise Bottcher says staff cases increased from 102 in December to 55-hundred, and for residents, it went from 54 to 36-hundred.

Cut 3 (04) “…nursing homes.”

And while case numbers increased radically with the Omicron variant Bottcher credits the high vaccination and boosted rate of 56-percent among nursing home residents at keeping COVID fatalities from spiking as much as cases. In December four COVID deaths were reported and in January it increased to 49.

Cut 4 (10) “…previous surges.”

As for nursing home staff, Bottcher says there has been an increase in the vaccination rate however only 16-percent of staff is boosted which we know is extremely important in decreasing severe COVID and death.

Cut 5 (07) “…much as possible.”


Baton Rouge Congressman Garret Graves predicts another surge in gasoline and electricity prices because of what he calls Russia’s veiled invasion of Ukraine. Graves says Russia is one of the largest net exporters of oil and gas in the world…

 Cut 6 (11) “…electricity bills.” 

Graves says the Ukraine-related sanctions imposed by the United States, European countries, and others will cut off Russian energy supplies. He says the best way to temper sustained high energy prices is to let American workers produce American energy.

Cut 7 (12) “…your oil.” 

Graves wrote a letter to the President expressing his concerns about higher gas prices and implored the Administration to take a different approach instead of opposing domestic energy production in the Gulf of Mexico…

Cut 8 (11) “…their homes.” 


Governor John Bel Edwards testified today before the U-S Senate Environment and Public Works Committee to discuss the state’s work on coastal restoration and to implore the federal government to take more expedient action as impacted regions see more and more erosion with each passing year.

Cut 9 (13) “…unnecessary delays.”

Earlier this month Edwards announced that Louisiana completed its Climate Action Plan, becoming the first state in the Deep South to develop a road map to getting to net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. The governor says it’s the latest example of how the state has become more aggressive in preparing for future natural disasters.

Cut 10 (10)  “…achieve it” 

Edwards asked the committee to support the Shoreline Health Oversight, Restoration, Resilience, and Enhancement Act, allowing Gulf States to receive a more significant share of offshore oil revenues to fund restoration and protection projects, and a stronger relationship with the Army Corps of Engineers. Without those measures, Edwards said millions of people and billions of dollars are at risk.

Cut 11 (11)   “…importance.”  


The Public Service Commission approves Entergy’s request to charge its customers an additional eight-dollars a month for the next 15 years to pay for the damage done to the power grid from four hurricanes and a winter storm. PSC member Foster Campbell believes Entergy should also pay part of the repair bill

Cut 12 (10) “…the people.”  

Campbell was the lone no vote out of the five-member commission. He says it’s troubling that utility customers will see higher bills, while the Entergy CEO enjoys raises…

cut 13 (14) “…to them”

Entergy says two-point-two million dollars in damages was done to its system following the hurricanes in 2020 and the winter storm in February 2021. The utility company says Hurricane Ida caused other one-million dollars. PSC member Eric Skrmetta voted for the surcharge…

Cut 14 (12)  “…to the money spent.” 

Skrmetta says Entergy faced a difficult task each time there was extensive damage and they rose to the challenge. including getting power restored in days for some parts of southeast Louisiana after Hurricane Ida…

Cut 15 (11) “…that they need.” 

Entergy says customers could see the surcharges as soon as May.