Roundup: GOP fundraising / Comite River diversion / $40M for schools

    In the bank: Republican gubernatorial candidate U.S. Rep. Ralph Abraham took in more campaign donations than his GOP competitor Eddie Rispone in the latest fundraising quarter. Rispone, a wealthy Baton Rouge businessman, has loaned his campaign $10 million, while Gov. John Bel Edwards, the incumbent Democrat, built up a hefty campaign account across three years in office. The latest fundraising reports were filed late Monday. Abraham raised $799,000 from January through April 5, compared to $597,000 for Rispone, who has poured his own money into the race. So, while Abraham reported $1 million in the bank, Rispone is sitting on $10.6 million. Edwards, in previously released detailed figures, raised $2.6 million and has $10.2 million in the bank. Read the full story.

    At last: The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development is having a groundbreaking ceremony Wednesday at 9 a.m. for the Comite River Diversion Canal project, which will consist of a 12-mile-long diversion channel from the Comite River to the Mississippi River designed to reduce flooding in in the region. Louisiana finally secured the federal funds necessary to complete the long-delayed, $340 million dollar project in July 2018.

    BESE: A committee of the state Board of Elementary and Secondary Education today approved about $40 million to improve nearly 500 struggling schools among 112 school systems across Louisiana, the Department of Education announced. The competitive allocations, which will be voted on by the full board tomorrow, will support schools as they implement state-approved strategies for improvement during the 2019-2020 school year.

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