From the desk of Matt Williams: Coming up this morning
The state of Louisiana has a new man in charge of education, but he's not getting the universal support from BESE members Gov. Bobby Jindal had hoped for. As that begins to take shape, so too does a brand new Coastal Master Plan from the Coalition to Restore Coastal Louisiana. It's ambitious and could take a while to complete. How much could it all cost and just why is it so important for the state? We'll talk with the group live this morning. Join us for 9NTM & The Early Edition beginning at 4:30 a.m.
High 53, Low 48
Mostly cloudy skies in the morning becoming mostly sunny by the afternoon. Windy & colder.
Don't forget http://www.gowafb.com when you're mobile today. Current conditions; live radar; 5-day, detailed and hourly forecasts; as well as movie times, flight info, lottery numbers, news and more!
Make sure to check out our DOTD Traffic Watch cameras before leaving the house today.
TODAY'S LOCAL HEADLINES
A Baptist church minister was arrested on charges of indecent behavior with a juvenile and computer-aided solicitation of a juvenile for sexual purposes. More
Authorities arrested a second teen in a shooting outside the Mall of Louisiana over the weekend. He is accused of driving the alleged shooter from the scene. More
The Louisiana Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE) has selected John White as the state's new superintendent of education. More
In two separate incidents, authorities arrested three men who allegedly tried to steal copper welding cable from a business. One suspect remains at large. More
Animal rights activists claimed a victory following a vote by the Metro Council to shorten the holding time of stray animals from six days to three. More
BATON ROUGE, LA (AP) - LSU has scrapped plans to launch its own brand of beer. LSU had been collaborating with a Baton Rouge-based microbrewery, Tin Roof Brewing Co., on the blonde ale that was going to be tied into a food science training program to teach students about fermentation.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - A federal judge has postponed the sentencing hearing for a former general manager of the New Orleans Public Belt Railroad who pleaded guilty to misusing the agency's money. James Bridger was scheduled to be sentenced Wednesday but a judge delayed the hearing until April 18.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - The new superintendent of education has tapped a New Orleans native to oversee a state agency that runs most of New Orleans' public schools. Patrick Dobard is a former teacher and state education official. He joined the state's Recovery School District as a deputy superintendent last May.
METAIRIE, LA (AP) - Drew Brees says he and receiver Marques Colston are connecting as well as ever in the New Orleans Saints' passing game. Colston had 120 yards receiving in the Saints' playoff-opening win over Detroit last weekend. The Saints play at San Francisco in a second-round playoff game on Saturday.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - The New Orleans Hornets are still trying to start another winning streak. The Hornets lost 95-85 on Wednesday night to Kevin Durant and the Oklahoma City Thunder. Chris Kaman and Carl Landry had 17 points for New Orleans, which lost for the seventh time in eight games.
TUSCALOOSA, AL (AP) - LSU is having a rough week when it comes to playing Alabama. The Tigers fell 69-53 on Wednesday night, just days after their football team lost to the Crimson Tide in the BCS Championship game. Andre Stringer scored 13 to lead LSU.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) - A person familiar with the move says LSU wide receivers coach Billy Gonzales has accepted the offensive coordinator's job at Illinois under new Illini coach Tim Beckman. Gonzales joined LSU at the end of the 2009 season following a five-year stint on Urban Meyer's staff at Florida.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)
NATIONAL & INTERNATIONAL NEWS
UNDATED (AP) - The Republican presidential candidates are working South Carolina today, getting ready for the primary in nine days. Frontrunner Mitt Romney hosts an early morning meeting with voters in Greer. Jon Huntsman attends a GOP breakfast on South Carolina's Daniel Island, Rick Perry has several events in the state and Rick Santorum will hold a town hall meeting in Charleston. Newt Gingrich has two afternoon events in Columbia.
TALLAHASSEE, FL (AP) - Florida doesn't hold its presidential primary until Jan. 31, but the voting already has started, and candidate Mitt Romney will attend a rally in West Palm Beach later today. As of Tuesday, 424,000 Republican absentee ballots had been mailed to military personnel, overseas residents and other Floridians. About 84,000 have been returned.
WASHINGTON (AP) - The video shows four Marines urinating on the corpses of Taliban fighters. The Marine Corps says it's not sure if the video is real or where it came from, but it's investigating. It says, "The actions portrayed are not consistent with our core values and are not indicative of the character of the Marines in our Corps."
NEW YORK (AP) - Some of the Occupy Wall Street protesters have no place to go if they're not camping out in New York City's Zuccotti Park. They've become a band of homeless Occupiers. About 100 protesters have been sleeping in various churches since Mayor Michael Bloomberg shut down their camp in November. The movement has spent about $20,000 keeping them fed and sheltered.
JACKSON, MS (AP) - A Mississippi judge has put on hold the release of 21 inmates who received either full pardons or suspended sentences from outgoing governor Haley Barbour. The state attorney general says Barbour may have violated the state constitution. Barbour gave reprieves to more than 200 inmates, including convicted murderers.
RALEIGH, NC (AP) - Forecasters with the National Weather Service believe a tornado ripped through two counties in North Carolina Wednesday, injuring at least three people who had to be airlifted to the hospital. Dozens of buildings and a mobile home park were damaged.
BEIJING (AP) - Chinese workers who assemble iPads and Xboxes say dozens of their colleagues threatened to jump from a factory building in a dispute over compensation. They say the workers climbed to the top of a six-story building and threatened suicide last week, but a government official talked them down.
(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All rights reserved.)
JUST FOR FUN
WAFB.com's Sudoku Puzzle of the Day is wildly popular and highly addictive! The objective is to fill a 9x9 grid so that each column, each row and each of the nine 3x3 boxes contain the digits from 1 to 9 only one time each. Today's free Sudoku puzzle is ready when you are! Click here to play now!
What's your sign? WAFB.com brings the astrological universe to you for free every day. Click here to check out your horoscope now!