National Tourism Week
Governor Jay Dardenne is hosting events throughout the state while traveling to celebrating National Tourism week.
The purpose of the trip is to emphasize the tourism industry and its record-setting economic impact on the state under Lt. Governor Dardenne’s leadership. Last year Louisiana attracted 28.7 million visitors, a 5 percent increase over 2013, resulting in $11.2 billion in total visitor spending and $836 million in state tax revenue. The revenue generated through domestic and international visitors represents a more than 38-to-1 return on investment of state funding.
Lt. Governor Dardenne will travel in a mini coach wrapped in Louisiana Travel’s latest tourism marketing campaign and statistics. He will be updating his Twitter and Facebook with his experiences from the road via @JayDardenne and www.facebook.com/JayDardenne.
Congressman Ralph Abraham will deliver Grambling State University’s 2015 Spring Commencement speech. The ceremony will be held at 10 a.m. Friday, May 8 in the Frederick C. Hobdy Assembly Center.
“We are privileged to welcome Congressman Ralph Abraham to GSU as our special guest and graduation speaker,” said GSU Interim President Cynthia Warrick.
Abraham was elected to represent Louisiana’s 5th District in December 2014. He represents Grambling, Lincoln Parish and 23 other parishes in north, central and southeastern Louisiana.
Abraham is the chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Subcommittee on Disability Assistance and Memorial Affairs, and serves on the Agriculture Committee, an important assignment since Louisiana’s 5th District is one of the largest row crop districts in the nation.
He graduated from the LSU School of Veterinary Medicine and practiced for 10 years before eventually seeking his Medical Doctor degree, which he earned at the LSU School of Medicine in Shreveport.
Before being elected to Congress, Abraham was a practicing family medicine doctor in Mangham.
Members of the Ways and Means Committee considered five resolutions and two bills to suspend tax exemptions during a Wednesdayevening hearing.
The House panel rejected two similar measures sponsored by Rep. Pat Smith, D-Baton Rouge, that would suspend all state sales and use tax exemptions, and cost businesses just over $420 million. HCR9 would suspend tax exemptions for 18 months while HB509 is a two-year suspension.
After receiving push back from the committee, Rep. Jack Montoucet, D-Crowley, voluntarily deferred his own proposal (HCR58) to suspend all business tax incentives.
The committee advanced the following resolutions:
HCR8 by Montoucet passed 10-8. This bill would suspend the exemption for business utilities as to the 0.97 percent state sales and use tax levy for sales of steam, water, electric power or energy, and natural gas. If made law, the resolution could cost businesses close to $110 million.
HCR14 by Rep. Katrina Jackson passed 11-7. This bill suspends all exemptions for the 0.97 percent state sale and use tax levy. If successful, this legislation would cost businesses nearly $180 million.
LABI will continue to fight against these bills next on the House floor.
(Above Image: John Young, President of Jefferson Parish)