Louisiana news briefs

By David Jacobs | The Center Square

Workforce Commission: Unemployment claims decrease

The initial unemployment insurance claims for the week ending Sept. 19 dropped to 14,842 from the previous week’s total of 16,182, according to the Louisiana Workforce Commission. For a comparison from before the COVID-19 pandemic, during the week ending Sept. 21, 2019, 1,653 initial claims were filed.

Continued claims for last week decreased to 238,724 from the previous week’s total of 250,244. The continued claims were above the comparable figure of 14,515 for the week ending Sept. 21, 2019.

East Baton Rouge Parish residents made 1,188 new claims, the most of any parish. Residents of Calcasieu Parish, which is recovering from Hurricane Laura, filed 1,186 new claims.https://c0926448c10a87dea02f20f93b25f0d6.safeframe.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html

Construction workers made 2,317 new claims, the most of any business sector.

MSY gets $39.2 million to extend taxiway

The Federal Aviation Administration on Thursday announced $335 million in airport safety and infrastructure grants to 80 airports in 25 states, including $39.2 million for Louis Armstrong New Orleans International Airport to extend its taxiway.

“Airport infrastructure projects funded by this $335 million in federal funding will advance safety, improve travel, generate jobs and provide other economic benefits for local communities,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said.

The total includes $300 million from the federal Airport Improvement Program and $35 million from the federal CARES Act for a 100 percent federal share.

Regents: Louisiana degree attainment rate up; increase lags national average

The percentage of Louisiana adults with a college degree or industry credential increased last year from 44.2 percent to 47.3 percent, according to the Louisiana Board of Regents, which oversees higher education.

During the same time, the national rate increased by 3.7 percentage points, reaching 51.3 percent and outpacing the state’s gains, the Regents report.

The Regents have set a goal to reach 60 percent by 2030. About 45 percent of all completers in 2019 were ages 25 and older, a population the Regents say is critical for reaching their goal.