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Morning Radio Newscast — December 19th
from Michelle Peyroux
December 19, 2016 -

(LRN) — Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards has issued a public health emergency for the town of St. Joseph in Tensas Parish after the Office of Public Health found elevated levels of lead in two samples. Health workers also found elevated levels of copper at two other sites. Residents have been advised to use an alternative source of water, even when making ice, brushing teeth or food preparation. St. Joseph has been dealing with water problems for years because of a deteriorating water distribution system. The governor has also ordered testing of every household in the town over the next month. The Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness is providing residents of the town with bottled water.

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — The district attorney in Mississippi's largest county will find himself the defendant and not the prosecutor in court Monday. Hinds County District Attorney Robert Shuler Smith is accused of conspiring to hinder the drug dealing prosecution of Christopher Butler Smith. He has said he can prove a video that supposedly proved drugs were found at Butler's house had been tampered with. The Mississippi Bureau of Narcotics denies that claim. Smith is charged with two felonies and a misdemeanor.

(LRN) — Today, Louisiana’s 8 electors will cast their votes for President-elect Donald Trump. Scott Wilfong is one of those electors. He says it’s an honor to cast his vote for the people of Louisiana, as he has done once before for Mitt Romney in 2012. “It makes you realize just the power of the republic. We’re 300 million people, and in the end of our country comes down to 538,” Wilfong said. Wilfong says each elector will cast his or her ballot in their respective state capitals today. He says the votes will then be sent to Washington, where the new Congress will read them when they convene in January. “The president of the Senate will open all of our votes in a joint session of Congress and will announce the results, and actually the man who will declare Donald Trump as president is Joe Biden,” Wilfong said. Wilfong says he and other electors have received hundreds of phone calls, emails, and letters asking them not to vote for Mr. Trump. But he says it would be a disservice to the people of Louisiana to go against their votes. However, he does expect some electors will be swayed. “With that much pressure, I would imagine two or three people probably will pull off and won’t vote for Trump, but I don’t see any way Donald Trump doesn’t get at least 300 electoral votes, which is way more than he needs,” Wilfong said.

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Four prominent businessmen and a woman long active in Republican politics are among those casting Mississippi's electoral votes for president. Republican Donald Trump is expected to receive all six of the state's Electoral College votes.

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Almost 100,000 Mississippians have signed up for the Mississippi No Call Registry for cellphones in just six months. What was once considered a problem only for landline phone users - calls from telemarketers - has now drawn the ire of cellphone users. On July 1, the Mississippi PSC began registering cellphones. Central Mississippi Public Service Commissioner Cecil Brown says the service is free. Visit to find out more.

HATTIESBURG, Miss. (AP) — A Hattiesburg pastor, Forrest County's former chief deputy and two others are set to be sentenced Monday on corruption charges. U.S. District Judge Keith Starrett will set punishments for the Rev. Kenneth Fairley, Artie Fletcher, Charles Bolton and Linda Bolton. Fairley was convicted Sept. 12 on three counts of conspiracy and theft in a federal case involving money skimmed from a federal housing program. Fletcher, indicted with Fairley, pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of failing to report a felony. In a separate case, then-Chief Deputy Charles Bolton was convicted of four counts of tax evasion and five counts of filing a false tax report relating to checks written to his restaurant and liquor store. His wife, Linda Bolton, was convicted on five counts of filing a false tax report.

VICKSBURG, Miss. (AP) — Due to a power outage affecting Warren County, the Vicksburg Warren School District has announced that all schools and offices will be closed today. Media outlets report that according to a statement from school district officials, several schools and system facilities were without power Sunday evening, and power will not be restored until at least mid-day Monday.

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Digital days at the National World War II Museum puts historians to work seeking to storm the internet and move thousands of first-person accounts of the fighting online. Executives with the New Orleans museum plan to create a vast online digital collection of 9,000 existing oral and written histories. But it will take longer than the war was fought, 10 years and $11 million dollars with thousands of hours of video to be handled.

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