....while Louisiana’s debt is downgraded, and all of our public universities teeter on bankruptcy, this is what we...

Posted by Brian Salvatore on Sunday, February 28, 2016
senate crazy 6by Tom Aswell, Publisher of LouisianaVoice.com
My longtime friend and confidant Harley Purvis, he of the booth in the back in the corner in the dark at John Wayne Culpepper’s Lip-Smackin’ Bar-B-Que House of Prayer and Used Light Bulb Emporium in Watson, had a term for the Louisiana House of Representatives passage of HB 602 yesterday:
Published in Louisiana legislature

term limitsYesterday, we posted part one of an interview of lobbyist Mary Patricia Wray. In that segment, she talked about the difficulties legislators are having this session. They are overworked and underpaid. They are stressed and combative. In fact, things are so bad that according to other sources, the legislators might not pass a budget until after the fiscal year begins. For Louisiana, that would be an extraordinary non-accomplishment, never been done. But, this is the Louisiana legislature, one year from elections.

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tops turveyAn issue the Louisiana Legislature continues to address poorly a House of Representatives panel this week kept that pattern going.   Yesterday, the House Education Committee passed along HB 399 by state Rep. Gary Carter. It would alter, whenever the Taylor Opportunity Program for Students did not receive full appropriation, the present across-the-board reduction algorithm. Instead, higher-achieving students, defined as those earning the top two categories, would receive no cuts although losing their extra stipends while the remainder would keep theirs only if their families had annual incomes below around $50,000, although they could recoup some from Pell Grants.
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dopes capitol 3Is medical marijuana the next Louisiana boondoggle?  The current Louisiana legislature seems bent on pushing through extended legislation that enlarges the number of medical conditions marijuana is supposed to treat.  And even though the use of marijuana for any purpose, medical or recreational, is specifically prohibited under federal law, the legislature seems hell-bent on opening up the floodgates for any number of medical conditions.

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mp wray 4The 2018 vintage of the Louisiana legislature has been in session now since February 19 2018.  Initially, it met in an extraordinary fiscal session called by Governor John Bel Edwards to grapple with the then-one billion dollar budget shortfall.   That two week endeavor ended in failure. Essentially nothing was passed.

Legislators being in session for essentially the first half of each year for the past series of springs has become a regular occurence, primarily due to major budgetary issues.  The individual lawmakers are tired. Nerves are frayed. The everyday grind focuses upon minutia. They are underpaid. And perhaps worse of all, nothing seems to be getting done. Bills are getting killed.

Published in Louisiana legislature

schedler listRefreshed embarrassment has come the way of Louisiana’s Republican Sec. of State Tom Schedler, and perhaps it’s more appropriate that he be ushered out the door rather than hoping he’ll do it himself anytime soon.

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chicken legislature 4Christopher Tidmore essentially calls it a game of legislative chicken. Which is what the House, the Senate and the Governor appear to be playing this Louisiana legislative session with the budget.  In a recent interview with the political columnist for the Louisiana Weekly and radio talk show host, Tidmore and with JMC Polling and Analytics, John Couvillon, the lawmakers must somehow fill a still-gaping hole in which House Republicans have basically taken taxes off the table after passing a budget protecting the popular TOPS program while shortchanging the health care and higher education vital services.

Published in Louisiana legislature
obama herpesLike herpes, the misnamed Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (“Obamacare”) keeps on giving. And Louisianans, who gained some relief from it courtesy of recent reforms, to varying degrees find themselves paying more one way or another.
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broke dome 4We're all familiar with "Build it, They will come"

That's exactly what New Orleans and Louisiana did to attract the New Orleans Saints and later the New Orleans Pelicans.

But, what if? What if we, the State of Louisiana, stopped funding our beloved professional football and basketball teams's existence in these parts, in what some might call, pro sports "pay to play"?

Familiar with "Fund us, or we will go"?

 

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budget cut capital 5The Council for a Better Louisiana (CABL) has released the following statement in relationship to the Louisiana House of Representatives, led by Republicans, passing a budget that makes major cuts to Louisiana higher education and healthcare. The budget is consistent with the party's philosophy to spend no more than is anticipated and to not raise taxes. Here is the statement:

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