News

Republicans ask Gov. Edwards to rescind mask mandate in schools

Louisiana set to receive $773 million to fund early childcare, but advocate says it’s just a start

BY: - April 16, 2021

Louisiana is set to receive $773 million from the American Rescue Plan Act to fund early childcare, but an early childhood advocate said if Louisiana wants to see meaningful, lasting change in improving early childhood education outcomes, it needs consistent investment from the state. Only 46 percent of Louisiana 3rd graders are on track to […]

Louisiana enacts new orphan oil well law to fetch $200 million in federal money

Congressional panel splits on regulation of ‘orphaned’ oil and gas wells

BY: - April 16, 2021

Members of a U.S. House Natural Resources panel agreed Thursday on the need to clean up and cap abandoned oil and gas wells, but disagreed along party lines about the extent of the federal government’s role in well regulation. The Energy and Mineral Resources Subcommittee hearing was held to consider a bill introduced by Rep. […]

West Monroe has never elected a Black person to its board; Justice Department steps in

BY: - April 15, 2021

The U.S. Department of Justice and the City of West Monroe have settled a voting rights lawsuit after federal officials realized that no Black candidate has ever been elected to the city’s Board of Aldermen despite 30% of the electorate being Black. The city has agreed to change its at-large method of electing its Board […]

House unanimously passes bill that expands definition of domestic abuse

BY: - April 15, 2021

A bill that expands Louisiana’s definition of domestic abuse passed unanimously in the House on Thursday with minimal debate. If HB 159 becomes law, the state’s new definition of domestic abuse would include “any act or threat to act that is intended to coerce, control, punish, intimidate, or exact revenge on the other party for […]

House passes qualified immunity bill

One bill would reform tax incentives while another would undo tax incentive reforms

BY: - April 15, 2021

Louisiana’s House Ways and Means Committee advanced a bill Thursday that would require a two-thirds vote of the legislature to enact any new tax incentives. However, a separate bill that threatens to remove the authority that local governments have over corporate property tax exemptions was proposed and ultimately deferred. House Bill 202, sponsored by Rep. […]

Tiger Stadium

LSU president says staff could be moved around — not fired — as a result of scandal

BY: - April 15, 2021

LSU interim president Tom Galligan said Wednesday that he may change up the job duties of some staff members following the coverup of sexual misconduct and abuse at Louisiana’s flagship university, but he again stopped short of saying anyone would be fired as a result of the scandal. “I would anticipate … that there may […]

‘We all deserve to keep our children’: Grieving grandmother calls attention to state’s high infant, maternal mortality rates

BY: - April 14, 2021

Argarette Weatherspoon-Collins told the Louisiana Senate Committee on Health and Welfare Wednesday that her daughter Jessica, then 6 months pregnant, went to see a doctor in March 2020  and when she was turned away because her insurance had just lapsed, went to an emergency room where her blood pressure registered 280/190. Twenty minutes later, Weatherspoon-Collins […]

House lawmakers reject vaccine reporting requirement for coroners

Pause for Johnson & Johnson vaccine extended as federal health panel wrestles with next steps

BY: - April 14, 2021

WASHINGTON — Use of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 shot will remain paused for at least a week, after a federal vaccine advisory panel said Wednesday that it had too little data on a rare but serious blood-clotting condition reported in at least six women. That means states and federally run vaccine sites will be relying […]

Term limits for Louisiana tax assessors moves forward in Legislature

Bills adjusting Louisiana corporate tax advance in House committee

BY: - April 14, 2021

The Louisiana House Ways and Means Committee advanced a pair of bills Wednesday that would adjust Louisiana’s corporate tax structure by repealing the state-allowed deduction for federal income taxes paid by businesses and establish a flat corporate tax rate of 6%. House Bills 292 and 293, sponsored by Rep. Neil Riser, R-Columbia, are companion bills […]

Vilsack keys in on food insecurity and nutrition in USDA budget request

BY: - April 14, 2021

WASHINGTON—Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Wednesday laid out USDA’s goals to expand food insecurity and nutrition progrmas in the president’s budget request, as well as the agency’s focus on programs to address longtime racial discrimination.   “Normally I would talk to you all about numbers in the budget,” Vilsack, the former governor of Iowa, told members […]

Louisianians favor more spending for early childcare and are getting more money for early childcare

BY: - April 14, 2021

The majority of Louisianians support more spending for early childcare, even if it means paying more in taxes, according to the fifth of five reports of the 2021 Louisiana Survey released Tuesday by LSU’s Public Policy Research Lab. Researchers in the Public Policy Research Lab at LSU Manship School of Mass Communication’s Reilly Center for […]

Julia Letlow sworn in as Louisiana’s 5th Congressional District representative

BY: - April 14, 2021

WASHINGTON—U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi swore in Rep. Julia Letlow on Wednesday afternoon—the first Republican woman to represent Louisiana in Congress. Letlow, 40, takes the place of her husband, Luke, to represent the 5th Congressional District of Louisiana after he died of COVID-19 last year days after he won a special election to replace retiring […]