News roundup: Dardenne taps Edmiston as tourism chief … Bill requiring reporting of child sex abuse heads to Senate floor … Deadline to apply for Capital One free small business training program is Friday
On tour: Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne today appointed Ruston native Kyle Edmiston to lead Louisiana's tourism effort. Edmiston will begin his duties as assistant secretary of the Office of Tourism on May 1. He most recently served as president/CEO of the Ruston Lincoln Parish Convention and Visitors Bureau for six years and was involved extensively in statewide tourism efforts, serving separately as vice chair, secretary and treasurer of the Louisiana Travel and Promotion Association. He also served as president of the Louisiana Association of Convention and Visitors Bureaus and sits on several regional tourism boards. Edmiston will take over for LeAnne Weill, who has held the position on an interim basis since November. Weill will remain on staff in a classified position, Dardenne's office says.
Silencing silence: A bid to toughen Louisiana law so as to require people to report child abuse is advancing in the Legislature, in response to the allegations of sexual abuse of boys involving former Penn State University assistant football coach Jerry Sandusky. A proposal by Sen. J. P. Morrell, D-New Orleans, is headed to the Senate floor after getting committee approval today. It would criminalize the failure to report sexual abuse of a child. Any adult who sees abuse would be required to report it or face a felony charge carrying a prison sentence of up to five years. The measure also would expand who must report allegations of abuse or neglect, whether they see it or not, and would change the misdemeanor crime of failure to report to a felony carrying a sentence of up to three years.
Don't miss out: If you want your small business to be one of 10 from the Baton Rouge area to receive seven months of free business development training from Capital One Bank under its "Getting Down to Business" program, you've only got until Friday to apply. The program, which began in 2010 and graduated its first two classes last year, will begin April 17, with meetings taking place every other Tuesday from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Capital One's downtown offices. The program's 14-course curriculum—which focuses on topics including credit, budgeting, marketing, business plans, financing, accounting best practices, networking, insurance and more—was developed by Capital One bankers and several local partners in the business community. Participating businesses will be eligible to receive a $2,000 savings account match upon completion of the program. Applications and more details can be found here.
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