PM Newscall, December 30th, 2016

State Fire Marshal Butch Browning is reminding everyone ringing in the New Year to be careful when lighting off fireworks. Don Molino has more…

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Governor John Bel Edwards has appointed Crowley state lawmaker Jack Montoucet as secretary of the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries. Michelle Southern reports…:

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New Year’s Eve is tomorrow and fireworks are the main attraction but State Fire Marshal Butch Browning is reminding people to always be cautious. Browning says every season, an average of nine people are injured due to fireworks. He reminds everyone to make sure and follow a few simple guidelines when lighting the devices.

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Browning says it’s never a good idea to repackage fireworks, like taping a bunch together because it’s a recipe for disaster. He also advises people to purchase fireworks from a licensed dealer and report anyone selling suspiciously to the state fire marshal’s office.

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Browning says some parishes do not allow people to purchase fireworks and set them off, like East Baton Rouge. He advises anyone who isn’t sure if their town or parish allows fireworks to check on the fire marshal’s website.

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The state Department of Environmental Quality is reminding the public to recycle after the holidays because more waste is produced in December than any other month. Jean Kelly with DEQ says almost everything is recyclable in one way or another.

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Kelly says you can even recycle electronics like computers in some parishes. She says in Easst Baton Rouge Parish, you can find information at about seasonal pickups and recycling from the Capital Area Corporate Recycling Council.

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Kelly says you can also recycle rechargeable batteries when they no longer hold a charge. She says people can call the Rechargeable Battery Recycling Corporation at 800-8-BATTERY for more information. She says some parishes have drop off sites for recycling, as well as pickups.

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Water testing results from more than 400 residences in the town of St. Joseph showed that at least 90 came back positive for levels of lead not safe for consumption. On December 16th, Governor John Bel Edwards issued a public health emergency for the town after two samples showed high levels, and he ordered testing of every household. State Health Officer Dr. Jimmy Guidry says advises all residents not to drink the water, even if their samples did not contain high levels of lead.

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Guidry says in many cases, they found that the lead was coming from pipes inside of the home. He says they are offering additional tests to make sure there aren’t other sources of lead in those homes that children could be exposed to.

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Guidry says the state is providing residents in St. Joe with drinking water while they look into long term solutions. He says they are also encouraging parents in homes that did not pass the inspection to have their children tested for lead as well.

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An arrest has been made in a brutal 2015 double slaying in Baton Rouge that claimed the lives of two young women from Texas. BRPD Sgt. L’Jean McKneely says 26-year-old Jonathan Robertson was in the East Baton Rouge Parish Prison on an unrelated attempted robbery charge. He says while Robertson was incarcerated, they were able to secure the weapon he had at the time of his arrest.

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McKneely says Robertson faces two counts of first-degree murder in the horrible deaths of 23-year-olds Brandi Gilbert and Corrine Rayford. He says it’s not known what happened leading up to the vicious attack on the victims…:

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McKneely says Robertson faces several other charges as it’s believed the man was responsible for a number of crimes after the murders of these women took place. He says they’re asking anyone who may be a potential victim to come forward.

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It’s going to be a wet New Years weekend across the Bayou State, and forecasters expect several inches of rain to fall throughout South Louisiana. Alek Krautmann with the National Weather Service in Slidell says the three day event lasts Saturday into Monday…:

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Krautmann says the system will come in two waves, the first Saturday evening into the overnight, then there will be a break before more rain arrives late Sunday night into midday Monday. He says the rainfall may result in localized street flooding in poorly drained areas…:

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