Author

Wesley Muller

Wesley Muller

Wes Muller traces his journalism roots back to 1997 when, at age 13, he built and launched a hyper-local news website for his New Orleans neighborhood. In the years since then, he has freelanced for the Times-Picayune in New Orleans and worked on staff at the Sun Herald in Biloxi, WAFB-9News CBS in Baton Rouge, and the Enterprise-Journal in McComb, Mississippi. He also taught English as an adjunct instructor at Baton Rouge Community College. Much of his journalism has involved reporting on First Amendment issues and coverage of municipal and state government. He has received recognitions including McClatchy's National President's Award, the Associated Press Freedom of Information Award, and the Daniel M. Phillips Freedom of Information Award from the Mississippi Press Association, among others. Muller is a New Orleans native, a Jesuit High School alumnus, a University of New Orleans alumnus and a veteran U.S. Army paratrooper. He lives in Ponchatoula, Louisiana, with his two sons and his wife, who is also a journalist.

Voting machine bill passes Senate committee

Secretary Kyle Ardoin forms non-elected commission to oversee Louisiana elections

By: - April 8, 2021

Louisiana Secretary of State Kyle Ardoin has formed a commission of non-elected officials to provide an overview of the state’s election processes. The Louisiana Commission on Election Integrity and Voting will hold its first meeting after the conclusion of the 2021 regular legislative session, which ends June 10. “Despite the challenges brought on by natural […]

Unemployment bills compete for deep cuts or slow increases in benefits

By: - April 7, 2021

State lawmakers will have at least two competing unemployment bills to consider that would change unemployment insurance in Louisiana, bringing either deep cuts or slow increases in benefits to out-of-work residents: House Bill 610 would increase unemployment benefits to rates in line with the rest of the country, while Senate Bill 225 would bring deep cuts […]

$405 million UI overpaid

Louisiana paid out at least $405 million in unemployment insurance to ineligible workers, audit finds

By: - April 5, 2021

Louisiana paid more than $405 million in fraudulent or ineligible pandemic relief benefits to nearly 100,000 people as an overwhelmed unemployment system was also affected by legislation passed by lawmakers last year, according to a report by the Louisiana Legislative Auditor. The Legislative Auditor’s office conducted a review of all state and federal COVID-19-related unemployment […]

Lawmakers override veto of concealed carry bill

AG Jeff Landry pulls La. into lawsuit over California gun control law

By: - April 2, 2021

Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry has inserted Louisiana into a California gun-rights lawsuit, joining 21 other Republican state attorneys general in filing a legal brief to challenge a gun control law that would prohibit high-capacity magazines in the State of California. Attorneys general  from Louisiana, Arizona, Alabama, Alaska, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Mississippi, Missouri, […]

Louisiana House votes to ban ‘vaccine passports’ that don’t exist yet

State AGs urge tech companies to stop vaccine card scams

By: - April 2, 2021

Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry and 45 other state attorneys general are urging Twitter, eBay, and Shopify to stop scammers from selling blank or fraudulently completed COVID-19 vaccine cards bearing the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention logo on their platforms, according to a press release from Landry’s office. “The use of your platform to […]

House passes qualified immunity bill

STD legislation that criminalizes exposure runs afoul of latest research, critics say

By: - April 1, 2021

A state legislator has introduced a bill that would make it a crime for someone to intentionally expose another with a sexually transmitted disease (STD). But some in the health care industry and LGBTQ community fear the bill will do the opposite of what is intended. House Bill 238, sponsored by Rep. Patricia Moore, D-Monroe, […]

capacity restrictions

Governor eases COVID-19 capacity restrictions at bars and other venues

By: - March 30, 2021

Gov. John Bel Edwards on Tuesday lifted some coronavirus-related capacity restrictions on restaurants, bars, gyms, retail outlets and other venues, citing a steady decline in new COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations across the state. However, the governor emphasized that he is leaving in place guidelines that require people to wear face masks and keep a healthy […]

Louisiana Survey shows economy and pandemic top residents’ concerns

By: - March 30, 2021

The results of the 2021 Louisiana Survey, released Tuesday, indicate residents are most concerned with the COVID-19 pandemic and the economy, even though more than two-thirds of those surveyed say that financially they’re doing as well or better than they were a year ago. Researchers in the Public Policy Research Lab (PPRL) at LSU’s Reilly […]

Cypress tree legislation would ban harvesting on public property

By: - March 30, 2021

The cypress tree, one of Louisiana’s most cherished icons, is disappearing at an alarming rate, but a bill introduced in the Louisiana House of Representatives hopes to protect it. House Bill 239, authored by Rep. Neil Riser, R-Columbia, would make it illegal to cut down, hurt or damage any cypress tree on all public property. […]

Misclassification of Employees

Misclassification of Employees Task Force disbands without finishing

By: - March 26, 2021

Louisiana’s Misclassification of Employees Task Force, which was assembled to tackle employer payroll fraud in the state, held its last meeting on Wednesday and disbanded without adopting most of the proposed legislation its members had hoped to give to state lawmakers for the regular session beginning April 12. After drafting a full report containing seven […]

Hodges bill targeting immigrants

Denham Springs lawmaker writes bill targeting immigrants to ‘deter theft of our LA tax dollars’

By: - March 25, 2021

State Rep. Valarie Hodges has introduced a bill targeting immigrants that could make it more difficult for Louisianans to claim dependents on their annual tax returns, particularly those of lower-income with children studying abroad. Present law allows taxpayers to claim a state individual income tax credit of 5 percent of the amount of the taxpayer’s federal […]

St. James Parish resident to testify at United Nations session on “Cancer Alley”

By: - March 24, 2021

A St. James Parish resident who has been pushing for cleaner air surrounding her home in “Cancer Alley” will address the United Nations Working Group on Peoples of African Descent on Thursday. The session is public and available online through the OHCHR’s website. Sharon Lavigne, founder of the grassroots, faith-based activist organization RISE St. James, […]