LRN AM Newscall September 19

Louisiana’s gas tax goes towards funding roads and bridges. And the state’s largest business association says it’s time to increase it. Brooke Thorington has more.

Cut 1 (32) “…I’m Brooke Thorington.”


41-year-old Melvin Emde of Oklahoma is in custody accused of faking his own drowning in Louisiana to avoid child rape charges in North Carolina. Brooke Thorington has more.

Cut 2 (33)  “…I’m Brooke Thorington.”


The first inpatient mental health unit in Louisiana dedicated to the specialized needs of pregnant and postpartum women is opening at Woman’s Hospital next year. Teiko Foxx has more.

Cut 3 (33) …I’m Teiko Foxx.”


Gasoline taxes in Louisiana go towards funding the construction and maintenance of roads and bridges in the Bayou State. The current 20-cent per gallon tax hasn’t been raised in more than thirty years but Louisiana Business and Industry President Jim Patterson is calling for that to change.

Cut 4 (09) “…infrastructure.”

It’s not very often that a business association calls for a tax increase and Patterson says it’s part of LABI’s strategic plan for the state. And while the majority of the gubernatorial candidates are against an increase, they aren’t alone…

Cut 5 (10) “…to happen.”

LABI Managing Partner of Economic Leadership Ted Abernathy says when your state depends on logistics for employment and your roads are crumbling and you don’t have the type of infrastructure you need to keep jobs…

Cut 6 (11) “…tough choices.”

And while LABI’s campaign to increase the state’s gasoline tax is part of their LA23 strategic plan, both Patterson and Abernathy acknowledge it will take some time before an increase happens.


The Marijuana Policy Project has released a voter guide for the October 14th primary so voters can see where the candidates, as well as incumbent legislators, stand on a variety of cannabis issues. Southeast Legislative Manager at M-P-P, Kevin Caldwell, says gubernatorial candidate Sharon Hewitt received an “F” grade…

Cut 7 (10) “…support legalization.”

But Mandeville Representative Richard Nelson received an A-plus grade as he supports legal possession of marijuana for individuals 21 and older. None of the other gubernatorial candidates filled out their questionnaires.

Caldwell says you can also see how other statewide officials feel about legalizing recreational marijuana and they also have scorecards for current lawmakers and the ones running for legislative seat

Cut 8 (11) “…I’ve seen.” 

Caldwell says legalizing marijuana is an issue that’s important to voters and a poll by LSU earlier this year showed that 70 percent support legalizing cannabis for adult use…

Cut 9 (12)  “…constituents are.”


41-year-old Melvin Emde of Oklahoma is in custody accused of faking his own drowning in Louisiana to avoid child rape charges in North Carolina. St. Charles Parish Sheriff Greg Champagne says on August 7th they received a call from Emde’s son that his father went under while kayaking on the Mississippi River near Hahnville. Champagne says they were immediately suspicious because he missed court in North Carolina…

Cut 10 (04) “…a hoax.”

On Sunday Georgia State Police attempted to pull over a motorcycle for not having a plate. The driver fled, crashed, and gave them a fake name. Campagne says fingerprints revealed Emde’s identity and arrest record. As for charges he could face in Louisiana…

Cut 11 (09) “…in North Carolina.”

Champagne says they are now able to tell the whole story and how law enforcement from multiple states and agencies worked together to capture Emde.

Cut 12 (10) “…don’t work.” 

Emde was wearing an ankle monitor as a condition of his bail in North Carolina.


Woman’s Hospital will open the state’s first 10-bed inpatient mental health unit for pregnant and postpartum women. President Rene Ragas says mental health challenges are a leading cause of maternal mortality.

Cut 13 (12) “…right now.”

The unit will allow mothers to spend time with their newborns as they receive mental health treatments. Senior Vice President of Patient Care Cheri Barker Johnson says the unit will be designed to address mental issues by a qualified staff.

Cut 14 (11) “…of things.”

The state’s pregnancy-associated mortality report for 2017 to 2019 found mental health disorders directly impacted 14 percent of pregnancy-related deaths. Johnson says women who are pregnant and postpartum are often sent to other facilities outside of the community.

Cut 15 (12) “…might need”

The unit will be one of only several in the U-S. The hospital plans to open the unit next fall.


The Saints are 2-0 for the first time since 2013 after beating the Carolina Panthers 20-17 in Charlotte last night. The offense could not find the end zone in the first half, but Tony Jones Jr scored two rushing touchdowns in the second half that were set up by deep passes from Derek Carr to Chris Olave and Rashid Shaheed. Coach Dennis Allen says it feels good to start 2-0…

Cut 16 (18) “…problem to have”

The Saints defense allowed its first touchdown of the season in the fourth quarter and made life tough on rookie QB Bryce Young, New Orleans held Carolina to 100 rushing yards, Young threw for 153 yards and he was sacked four times. Allen says the defense followed the game plan….

Cut 17 (16) “…game plan”


After blowing out Mississippi State in Starkville, the 12th ranked Tigers are getting ready to host Arkansas at 6 PM on Saturday night. The Razorbacks are coming off a home loss to BYU, where they blew a 14 points lead. Hogs Quarterback K-J Jefferson turned it over twice. LSU Coach Brian Kelly says Jefferson might have been caught trying to do too much…

Cut 18 (18) “…against us.”

LSU quarterback Jayden Daniels and receiver Malik Nabers shared SEC Offensive Player of the Week honors  for their performances in the 41-14 win over Mississippi State. Daniels threw for 367 yards and two touchdowns and rushed for two more scores. Nabers caught 13 passes for 239 yards and two TDs. Kelly on why Nabers is one the SEC’s best wide outs…

Cut 19 (18) “…opportunity”

The Tigers held State to 201 yards of total offense on Saturday and they played that well without two starters, safety Greg Brooks who suffered a medical emergency and linebacker  Omar Speights, who has a hip injury. Kelly credits junior linebacker Greg Penn for being a calming presence…

Cut 20 (19) “..with him”