Kate Archer Kent

Chuck Smith brings more than 30 years'  experience to Red River Radio  having started out as a radio news reporter and moving into television journalism as a newsmagazine producer / host,  talk-show moderator, programming director and managing producer and news director / anchor  for commercial, public broadcasting and educational television.  He has more recently worked in advertising, marketing and public relations as a writer, video producer and media consultant.   In pursuit of higher learning,  Chuck studied Mass Communications at Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia and motion picture / television production at the University of California at Los Angeles.   He has also taught writing for television at York Technical College in Rock Hill, South Carolina and video / film production at Centenary College of Louisiana, Shreveport.

COVID-19 SURGES - Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards announced  Saturday  a statewide mask mandate, putting tougher limits on group gatherings and shuttering bars.  Beginning Monday,  the governor's proclamation requires face coverings for everyone ages 8 and older except for anyone who has a medical condition that prevents the wearing of a face covering

LA. COVID-19 INCREASES - Governor John Bel Edwards held a Covid-19 update  yesterday afternoon for for Louisiana  as the state’s  coronavirus cases topped 70,000  Wednesday. 

"We've had three weeks now of going in the wrong direction with respect to the numbers that we're seeing on cases and hospitalizations," Edwards said.

Edwards  said most of the infections can be attributed  to Community Spread and  also  among  younger people.

MASK REQUIREMENT - The  number of Covid-19 cases and hospitalizations are on the rise in Louisiana and while Northwest Louisiana hasn’t suffered  the brunt as bad as the southern part of the state – the increases are noticeable enough to cause alarm among local health and city officials. Latest report from the Louisiana Department of Health Shows Caddo Parish increased from 3,706 positive cases on Sunday to 3,740 on Monday and has 243 deaths related to the virus.

MASKS REQUIRED IN BATON ROUGE - Louisiana is seeing its largest daily coronavirus case spike since April, during the height of the state’s outbreak. Nearly 2,100 new cases of the COVID-19 disease caused by the coronavirus were confirmed over the last day in Louisiana residents, and hospitalizations continued to tick upward.    The trend is worrying public health experts that Louisiana’s once successful efforts to slow infections are being undermined by a complacent public ignoring recommended precautions.

TEXAS SEX ED - Yesterday, the Republican-dominated Texas State Board of Education began hearing testimony on how to update sexual education standards for the first time since 1997. 19-year-old Lily Stern told board members she supports a comprehensive curriculum, which she did not have as a student.                

LOUISIANA SPECIAL SESSION CONCLUDES Louisiana’s Special 30-day Legislative Session ended yesterday.  The highlights --Lawmakers wound up agreeing to expand and extend business tax credits, exemptions and incentive programs.   One of the largest tax breaks would benefit the gambling industry.  It costs $11 million in the first year and grows annually.

The state’s budget bill a major outstanding issue headed into the final day of the session. At the conclusion of the Special Session- Governor Edwards remarked the outcome was not what was originally hoped for.

TEXAS COVID-19 SINGLE DAY SPIKE - Texas reported almost 5500 positive Covid-19 cases yesterday, a new record high for a single day.  A retiring Republican Congressman from Texas is concerned about the surge of COVID-19 cases, especially in his district.  Pete Olson said during a U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee hearing Tuesday, he is worried about the rising number of 20 to 39-year-olds getting the virus.                     

ARK COVID-19 -  Arkansas has seen its largest single-day increase in new coronavirus cases among non-incarcerated people.     Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced Friday that  703 people tested positive  including 41 inmates at correctional facilities.

LA MEDICAL MARIJUANA EXPANSION – On Tuesday,   Governor  John Bel Edwards officially signed into law a bill to greatly expand Louisiana's medical marijuana program.  The Governor’s pen allows doctors to recommend it as treatment for any patient they believe it would help.  Before Tuesday’s signing -- medical marijuana could only be recommended, but not be officially prescribed by licensed physicians in Louisiana.