Baton Rouge

The Louisiana Department of Health can confirm an outbreak connected to multiple Tigerland bars in Baton Rouge, La. The Department has received at least 100 reports of patrons and staff testing positive for COVID-19.

Anyone who visited Tigerland bars over the weekend should consider themselves exposed to COVID-19 and should self-quarantine for 14 days and monitor for symptoms. 

Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:

Ken Lund /

The Louisiana House has agreed to a $34 billion operating budget for next year that includes hundreds of millions in federal coronavirus aid. They passed it unanimously Wednesday.

Ken Lund /

The head of Louisiana’s gambling regulatory board has been ousted by state senators who refused to confirm his reappointment on the final day of the regular legislative session.

Ronnie Jones has been chairman of the Louisiana Gaming Control Board since August 2013. He was among 11 appointees selected to serve on state boards who didn’t receive approval Monday from the Senate. Senators debated the confirmation decisions behind closed doors in an executive session. They voted on a list of confirmations in bulk.

Louisiana is hosting its annual state book festival celebrating readers and writers for a 16th year in Baton Rouge.

The event will be held at the Louisiana State Capitol, the nearby state library and the surrounding grounds on Saturday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

More than 230 authors and other presenters will participate in 100 book-themed programs across the day, along with book signings. For young readers, the festival will have storytelling, crafts, face painting and other activities.

Photo by Marie Constantin /

Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards swiped at Republican opponent Eddie Rispone on Monday for missing another candidate forum ahead of the runoff election, accusing the businessman of dodging public events to limit scrutiny of an undefined agenda.

The Deep South's only Democratic governor, battling to reach a second term and targeted by the national GOP for ouster, started and ended his appearance before the Press Club of Baton Rouge by asking: "Where is Eddie?"

"What are the specific things that he wants to do?" Edwards asked.

State Symbols USA /

Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards and his Republican challenger Eddie Rispone will meet in an Oct. 30 debate.

The two contenders have agreed to an event planned by Louisiana Public Broadcasting and the Council for A Better Louisiana that will air statewide. The Baton Rouge debate may be the only head-to-head sparring the candidates do ahead of the Nov. 16 runoff.

Rispone, a businessman making his first run for public office, hasn't announced his willingness to participate in any other proposed forums so far.

Noé Alfaro /

The Louisiana Office of Tourism (LOT) will hold additional meetings in New Orleans and Baton Rouge to plan the new Louisiana Civil Rights Trail. These additional meetings continue the planning process started in the spring with a series of meetings held across the state.

Karen Neoh /

A police officer is dropping his appeal of a three-day suspension over a confrontation with a black man whose shooting death prompted widespread protests in Baton Rouge in 2016.

Attorney Kyle Kershaw announced Thursday morning that client Howie Lake II was withdrawing his appeal with a civil service board. Kershaw said that continuing to appeal wasn't worth it because the discipline was relatively minor.

Amy the Nurse /

U.S. Rep. Ralph Abraham, the leading Republican candidate for Louisiana governor, is pledging to keep his campaign ire focused on Democratic incumbent John Bel Edwards, after another GOP contender in the race unleashed an attack ad against Abraham.

Businessman Eddie Rispone's decision to launch a TV ad Tuesday slamming Abraham has drawn backlash from some Republicans who call it the wrong strategy to defeat Edwards. They worry about repeating the GOP infighting of the 2015 governor's race that helped Edwards become the Deep South's only Democratic governor.

Amy the Nurse /

Louisiana's 16th annual state book festival needs volunteers for the November event.

This year's festival in Baton Rouge will be held Nov. 2 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. It will feature 250 authors and panelists.

The free festival is held in and around the Louisiana Capitol, with readings for adults and children, music and food. Events, exhibits and author talks happen in the House and Senate chambers, in legislative committee rooms, around the Capitol grounds and across the street at the state library and state museum.