Reported by: Associated Press
Louisiana Senator Mary Landrieu is facing questions over a $2 million education earmark that benefited a Texas company.
Citizens for Responsibility and Ethics in Washington is asking the Department of Justice to investigate the relationship between Landrieu and Voyager Expanded Learning. The company was founded by Randy Best, a Dallas merchant banker and prodigious Republican donor.
On October 19th, 2001, Best held a fundraiser for Landrieu. On or about November 2nd, Landrieu received $30,000 from Best, company employees and their relatives. That's according to Federal Election Commission records.
By October 15th, Landrieu had included the $2 million earmark in a spending bill for the District of Columbia. And, her interest in seeing the Voyager program funded for D.C. schools dated to at least May of 2001.
On May 15th, she wrote a letter to the D.C. appropriations subcommittee chairman asking him to provide the district with $3.5 million for the program. Landrieu's office released that letter today.
The reading program was for use in kindergarten and first-grade classes in the D.C. school district.
The earmark attracted attention after the Washington Post highlighted it in a December 20th article on Congress' role in the affairs of the troubled D.C. school district.
In a recent interview with WWL-TV in New Orleans, Landrieu denied wrongdoing and said the company did not influence her. She added that she had "absolutely nothing to hide about" her relationship with Best.
Sanctity of Human Life Sunday is on Sunday, January 21 and there are events across the state, as well as here in Southwest Louisiana to commemorate the day.More >>
The Calcasieu Parish Sheriff's Office says a barbecue pit started a fire near the First Apostolic Church in Moss Bluff late Thursday, Jan.18. A KPLC viewer says an outbuilding near the church was engulfed in flames. CPSO says the church was not damaged. No word yet on what caused the barbecue pit to ignite. Copyright 2018 KPLC. All rights reserved.More >>
Fields, Starks and Merryville are without water following a system failure in the Fields area, officials with Waterworks District 2 said. Once water is restored, a precautionary boil advisory will be in place. The advisory will be lifted once water samples have been tested by the Department of Health and Hospitals and found safe to drink. Copyright 2018 KPLC. All rights reserved.More >>
It's coming up on five years since the killing of a local pastor in front of his congregation. Woodrow Karey is charged with manslaughter in the death of Ronald Harris, pastor of Tabernacle of Praise Worship Center. Karey's trial was set for this week but has been postponed. The trial is now set for April 2. Preliminary jury selection was just starting in the trial of Woodrow Karey when a winter storm blew through Southwest Louisiana early this week, costing the court a ...More >>