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The Jim Engster Show
10:28 am
Fri February 8, 2013

MONDAY: LSU's Stanley Roberts. the GOP's Mike Chittom & John Treen, Novelist Jackie Collins

Jim talks with former LSU basketball great Stanley Roberts, who went back and got his degree from the Old War Skule at age 42.

Michael Chittom and John Treen join Jim to talk about the current state of the Republican Party.

Best-selling novelist Jackie Collins visits with Jim to discuss her latest book, "The Power Trip"


Opinion
12:59 pm
Thu February 7, 2013

It's Easier to Buy a Gun than a Used Guitar

In Louisiana, the wait for a Glock 19 like this one can be just 30 minutes, while it's 30 days for a used guitar.
Credit Keith LaFaille / Flickr

In a national poll released Thursday, Quinnipiac University found no significant voter opposition to background checks for all gun buyers.

It didn’t take long for commentator J. Cullens to pass the background check when he bought a gun in December.

But after the mass shooting at an elementary school in Connecticut, he’s not sure if buying a firearm in Louisiana should be so easy.


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Medicaid
11:47 am
Thu February 7, 2013

DHH Secretary on Healthcare Cuts: It's All About Efficiency

Bruce Greenstein, Secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals
Credit Dept. of Health and Hospitals

Almost $83 million in cuts to healthcare programs and services went into effect Friday to shore up a mid-year deficit in the state budget. These are separate from a previous round of cuts made in July.

The latest round of reductions includes cuts to services for at-risk children and low-income moms, as well as a one percent drop in the rate paid to hospitals and physicians for non-primary Medicaid services. 


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The Jim Engster Show
10:22 am
Thu February 7, 2013

FRIDAY: Blue Cross Blue Shield's David Carmouche, BR Sympony Conductor Tim Muffett

Dr. David Carmouche, Chief Medical Officer of Blue Cross Blue Shield Louisiana, and BCBSLA economist Mike Bertaut talk about state Medicaid cuts and how they'll affect folks,  and changes this year brought about by the Patient Protection & Affordable Care act, also called "Obamacare".

Baton Rouge Symphony Orchestra Conductor Tim Muffett discusses Diana Ross's sold out performance tonight, and the symphony's 2013 season.


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Politics
4:06 pm
Wed February 6, 2013

Tax Rebate Proposals May Move to Odd Years

Louisiana lawmakers are limited to what topics they may consider when - one senator hopes his amendment would better categorize tax rebates.
Credit Jack Cox

State Sen. Dan Claitor wants to add tax rebates to the list of matters that can only be considered in odd-numbered years, when the constitution mandates lawmakers take up fiscal issues. Generally, even-numbered years are reserved for non-fiscal deliberations. The constitutional amendment would require two-thirds approval in the legislature and a vote of the people.

Tax exclusions, exemptions, deductions, credits, and refunds are already limited to fiscal years.

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Politics
3:57 pm
Wed February 6, 2013

Legislators Again Aim for Executive Branch Transparency

Lawmakers will consider a bill that could curtail the Governor's privilege to classify documents.

After running on a platform of increased transparency, the Gov. Bobby Jindal has relied on a law that shields gubernatorial documents from public view to dodge open records requests from the press.


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The Jim Engster Show
10:56 am
Wed February 6, 2013

THURSDAY: Project Purr's Peggy Polk, Former State Lawmaker Michael Jackson

Former state Representative Michael Jackson discusses the firing of Police Chief Dwayne White,  crime in the Capital City and other matters of importance.

Peggy Polk, with the shelter cat advocacy group Project Purr, talks with Jim about a recent article detailing how many birds are killed yearly by cats.


Grading Teachers
4:12 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

EBR Schools Official: Teacher Evaluations Difficult, But Necessary

Compass -- the evaluation system being rolled out in public schools across the state -- has raised the stakes. Teachers who don’t score highly effective under the new measures face the loss of salary and tenure. Ineffective teachers could lose their jobs.

The state Department of Education says so far attrition has remained steady, but the East Baton Rouge Parish School District is still wary of turnover. Beanka Williams, the coordinator of support programs for EBR, says the district is having job fairs monthly to make sure schools are fully staffed.

Williams has also been fielding questions from anxious teachers since last summer when they were first asked to set goals for what their students would learn this year.
 


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Business
3:41 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

Baton Rouge Patent Growth Lags Behind Cities Nationwide

Patent production isn’t growing as quickly in Baton Rouge as in other metro areas, according to a new national study.

The Brookings Institution ranks Baton Rouge 141st out of over 350 metro areas for patent production. The capitol city averaged 71 new patents yearly between 2007 and 2011. But it is on the bottom of the list for patent growth.

High patent production typically coincides with low unemployment. And patent growth can indicate coming industry expansion.

Politics
12:26 pm
Tue February 5, 2013

Vitter's New Clout Could Bring Changes to Army Corps

The Army Corps of Engineers is responsible for many flood control projects around the state - like the Morganza floodway.
Credit US Army Corps of Engineers

The U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee meets Thursday to discuss reforms to the Army Corps of Engineers.

One of Louisiana’s senators, David Vitter, now sits as the ranking minority member of the committee.

Vitter saif the Corps has a history of putting projects on the back burner because of cost and bureaucratic entanglements.

“Important projects take twenty years or more, deadlines are almost never met,” Vitter said. “It’s just one paper shuffle after another.”

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