News Minute: Here is the latest Louisiana news from The Associat - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports, Social

News Minute: Here is the latest Louisiana news from The Associated Press at 5:40 p.m. CDT

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Students will be paying more out of pocket to attend seven of the University of Louisiana System's colleges in the next school year. The executive committee of the college system's governing board approved $19 million in fee hikes Friday. An increase of $212.36 per semester for students at the University of Louisiana at Lafayette is the biggest hike approved for the 2017-18 school year, a 4.5 percent bump over last year that is estimated to raise $7 million annually for the campus.

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Farmers and ranchers in seven Louisiana parishes are eligible for federal disaster loans if they lost money because of excessive rain throughout most of April and May. The U.S. Department of Agriculture designated Evangeline Parish as a primary natural disaster area because of rains from April 4 through May 23. The six adjacent parishes also qualify. They are Acadia, Allen, Avoyelles, Jefferson Davis, Rapides and St. Landry.

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Both of Louisiana's Republican U.S. senators, Bill Cassidy and John Kennedy, say they're studying the Senate GOP health plan. But advocacy groups seeking to keep the current law intact have their focus squarely on one of them: Cassidy. A doctor, Cassidy has indicated he has problems with the bill that won House passage, which was the building block for the Senate legislation. Those concerns have critics of the Senate bill hoping they may be able to persuade Cassidy to oppose the proposal.

LACOMBE, La. (AP) - The recently closed Louisiana Heart Hospital will become a facility for skilled nursing, rehabilitation and long-term acute care. That word comes from Ochsner Health Systems. Ochsner says in a news release that it will lease the hospital and work with St. Tammany Parish Hospital and Slidell Memorial Hospital at the former heart hospital in Lacombe. It says the new units will open in the next 12 to 18 months.

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