Chuck Smith

News Producer

Chuck Smith brings more than 30 years'  experience to Red River Radio  having started out as a radio news reporter and moving into television journalism as a newsmagazine producer / host,  talk-show moderator, programming director and managing producer and news director / anchor  for commercial, public broadcasting and educational television.  He has more recently worked in advertising, marketing and public relations as a writer, video producer and media consultant.   In pursuit of higher learning,  Chuck studied Mass Communications at Southern Arkansas University in Magnolia and motion picture / television production at the University of California at Los Angeles.   He has also taught writing for television at York Technical College in Rock Hill, South Carolina and video / film production at Centenary College of Louisiana, Shreveport.

STATEWIDE TREND: Graduation rates at Bossier and Caddo Parish high schools dipped from 2015 to 2016 as part of a trend that saw the statewide graduation rate fall, according to data released by the Louisiana Department of Education. Bossier Parish saw a decrease from 84.5 percent to 82.8 percent.   Caddo saw a drop from 75.2 percent to 73.6 percent.  This year marks the first time since 2010 that Caddo Parish has seen graduation rates drop, BUT its graduation rate has actually risen more than 13 percentage points the past 10 years.

Courtesy: Sasol North American Operations

LOUISIANA JOBS:  The latest state employment figures are out and while Louisiana's jobless rate could be worse, compared with the national average--- the news isn't great.    Louisiana’s  unemployment rate  is  5.7%, compared to  the national average  of  4.3%.   But Louisiana has attracted businesses through various tax incentives.  One of the current projects is the $14-billion Sasol expansion in Westlake, with construction presently 55% complete.  State officials say this project has generated 10,000 direct and indirect jobs but according to news reports...

Courtesy: CBS News

Dominating the national news this week is the potential vote on the Senate Republican Healthcare bill as Senate Majority leadership hopes to have a vote before the July 4th holiday break.  Although the Senate has a Republican majority,  there are some Republican Senators who have spoken out that they have reservations about the bill in its current form.  Some Senators feel the bill doesn’t go far enough in repealing the core of Obama-Care,  whereas others have expressed concern that the bill  could negatively impact  healthcare in  their state.