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Wednesday at the Louisiana Legislature

House convenes at 2:00 p.m.
Senate convenes at 9:00 a.m.

HOUSE COMMITTEE MEETINGS
Criminal Justice. 9:30 a.m. in Committee Room 6. Agenda includes: Removed: HB 258, HB 673, HB 745

  • HB13 Creates the crime of unlawful sales of firearms.
  • HB71 Limits appeals of death row inmates.
  • HB494 Provides that the right to keep and bear arms includes the right to carry a concealed handgun without a permit or license.
  • HB508 Provides relative to certain offenses of operating a vehicle while intoxicated.
  • HB511 Provides relative to operating a vehicle while intoxicated.
  • HB519 Authorizes the possession of short barrel firearms without federal registration for lifetime concealed handgun permit holders.
  • HB520 Excludes carrying a concealed handgun from the crime of illegal carrying of weapons for certain persons.
  • HB546 Provides with respect to restitution in criminal cases.
  • HB638 Provides relative to the crime of failure to register as a sex offender or child predator.
  • HB639 Amends the definition of criminal offense against a victim who is a minor to include certain convictions of stalking.
  • HB697 Provides relative to the in-person periodic renewals of persons who are required to register but do not have a fixed residence address.
  • HB707 Creates an exception to the crime of carrying a concealed weapon on a school campus for concealed weapons holders who are teachers or administrators of certain schools.
  • HB885 Provides for certain procedures relative to the end of registration and notification requirements of convicted sex offenders and child predators.
  • HB1142 Provides relative to bail restrictions for offenses against a family or household member or dating partner.
  • HB1157 Amends provisions of law regarding intensive parole supervision.
  • HB1158 Creates the crime of solicitation of funds or transportation for certain unlawful purposes.
  • HB1216 Amends the crime of unlawful presence of a sex offender relative to a former victim.
  • SB296 Provides relative to inventory of untested sexual assault collection kits.
  • SB542 Requires annual report from the Gaming Control Board on impact of technology advances on gaming industry.

Education. 9:00 a.m. in Committee Room 1. Agenda includes: Added: HCR 61; Removed: HB 407, HB 867.  NOTE: Committee will reconvene after adjournment and may consider any instrument not disposed of during the morning session. HB 1177 WILL BE heard after adjournment.

  • HB89 Provides relative to the payment of accrued liabilities of retirement systems and other retirement obligations from minimum foundation program funds allocated to charter schools.
  • HB184 Provides relative to assets or property acquired or used by charter schools under certain circumstances.
  • HB701 Provides relative to student eligibility for vouchers.
  • HB702 Provides relative to eligibility of kindergarten students for participation in the voucher program.
  • HB703 Prohibits the State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education from authorizing charter schools under certain circumstances.
  • HB816 Requires that the Recovery School District provide advance notice to contractors when decisions have been made to cancel contracts.
  • HB836 Requires the state Dept. of Education to develop an accountability system for nonpublic schools participating in the voucher program and requires compliance with the system by such schools.
  • HB876 Provides relative to greetings and displays associated with traditional celebrations in winter in public schools.
  • HB941 Provides for allocations of certain public school funds to building renovation and replacement purposes in certain school districts.
  • HB1177 Provides relative to the governance of schools in large school systems.
  • HB1199 Provides relative to parents’ access to information about schools and instructional materials used by schools.
  • HB1228 Provides relative to a program for educating students with exceptionalities.
  • HB1243 Provides conditions and prohibitions relative to approval of certain charter school proposals.
  • HCR61 Urges and requests BESE to develop a statewide funding model for early childhood care and educational services.

Health & Welfare. 10:30 a.m. in Committee Room 5. Agenda includes: Removed:  HB 720; Added: HCR 43, HB 1200

  • HB66 Requires state-affiliated physicians to serve on the State Medical Disability Board upon request of the Firefighters’ Retirement System.
  • HB216 Provides for preparation of pies in the home for public consumption.
  • HB228 Relative to criminal history of an adult living in a foster home.
  • HB294 Provides relative to preparation of cane syrup in the traditional manner for public consumption.
  • HB396 Provides relative to the membership of the Nursing Supply and Demand Council.
  • HB403 Provides for certificates of stillbirth and hospital policies concerning disposition of fetal remains.
  • HB775 Provides relative to home processors of food for sale.
  • HB889 Establishes a fund to educate Louisiana citizens on ways to opt out of the Affordable Care Act.
  • HB1052 Creates the Domestic Violence Prevention Commission.
  • HB1061 Provides relative to legal representation for children and indigent parents in child protection cases.
  • HB1148 Provides with respect to certain food service establishment permits.
  • HB1200 Provides relative to Medicaid recovery audit contractors and procedures.
  • HB1215 Provides relative to collaborative practice agreements between advanced practice registered nurses and physicians.
  • HCR38 Urges Louisiana’s congressional delegation to support a national moratorium on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.
  • HCR43 Requests the State Board of Medical Examiners to study and make recommendations concerning authorization to perform certain surgical procedures.
  • HCR67 Provides for the Louisiana Colorectal Cancer Roundtable to be coordinated by the School of Public Health of the LSU Health Sciences Center at New Orleans.

House & Governmental Affairs. 9:30 a.m. in Committee Room 2. Agenda includes: Added: HB 616, HB 1178
Removed: HB175, HB 270, HB 627

  • HB121 Provides relative to records of the office of the governor.
  • HB198 Provides for the election sections for the City Court of Baton Rouge and for the number of judges elected from such sections.
  • HB318 Provides a public records exemption for certain documents of or in the possession of the Board of Tax Appeals.
  • HB614 Provides relative to certain deadlines relative to meetings of public bodies.
  • HB616 Provides relative to public records requests.
  • HB684 Exempts certain security districts and similar districts from certain requirements for public notice and for recording or broadcast of certain meetings.
  • HB686 Provides relative to disclosure of information concerning certain boards and commissions.
  • HB716 Establishes protections for certain independent public contractors who report criminal activity on the part of public entities.
  • HB879 Provides relative to insurance holding companies.
  • HB1121 Provides an exemption from the Public Records Law for certain commercially sensitive information of a public power authority.
  • HB1135 Exempts certain records and information pertaining to selection or service of a grand or petit jury from the Public Records Law.
  • HB1151 Provides relative to the election of judges for the City Court of Baton Rouge.
  • HB1178 Provides relative to the membership and election of members of the East Baton Rouge Parish School Board.
  • HB1207 Provides references in the Public Records Law to exemptions applicable to certain records relative to insurance.

Insurance. 9:30 a.m. in Committee Room 3. Agenda includes: Removed: HB 722, SB 169

  • HB470 Requires insurers who are admitted to write homeowner’s policies in the state to provide coverage on any residential structure which has been constructed or retrofitted to comply with the Uniform Construction Code.
  • HB1163 Requires an insurer who obtains a consumer’s credit report to provide a copy of the credit report to the applicant.
  • HB1203 Provide that insurers may not use claims that did not exceed the insured’s deductible to cancel coverage.
  • HB1218 To provide with respect to notice of uninsured motorist coverage.
  • SB178 Provides with respect to health care sharing ministries.
  • SB181 Provides with respect to the Louisiana Citizens Insurance Corporation policy take-out program.
  • SB243 Provide with respect to the Insurance Fraud Investigation Unit.
  • SB247 Provides with respect to insurance fraud.
  • SB254 Provides relative to travel insurance.
  • SB436 Changes the sunset date of the “Sledge Jeansonne Louisiana Insurance Fraud Prevention Act”.

Natural Resources & Environment. 9:30 a.m. in Committee Room 4. Agenda includes: Removed: HB 1082

  • HB311 Removes lands located in the Atchafalaya Basin from certain state lease requirements.
  • HB609 Provides with respect to state property in Orleans parish.
  • HB782 Deposits proceeds collected by the state from the use or withdrawal of surface water into the Aquatic Plant Control Fund for aquatic weed control and eradication.
  • HB1081 Provides for the authority to transfer or lease certain state property in Lafayette Parish.
  • HB1085 Provides for the lease of certain state property in Ascension Parish.
  • HB1120 Determines that the Southern Hills Aquifer System is an area of groundwater concern and a critical area of groundwater concern and provides for limitations on groundwater removal from such aquifer system.
  • HB1154 Provides for the size and number of escape rings on crab traps.
  • HB1160 To require the Wildlife and Fisheries Commission to establish a program to enhance and elevate professionalism in the commercial crab industry.
  • HB1204 Provides for alternate unit well permits.
  • HB1242 Authorizes the use of kayaks, canoes, and pirogues at the Rockefeller Wildlife Refuge.
  • HCR52 Urges the commissioner of conservation to evaluate the appropriateness of restrictions on withdrawals from the Southern Hills Aquifer System.

SENATE COMMITTEE MEETINGS
Education. At adjournment in John J. Hainkel, Jr. Room. Agenda includes: Added: SB 358; Removed: SB 458

  • HB1016 Provides for State Seal of Biliteracy to recognize high school graduates who meet certain academic eligibility criteria relative to language proficiency.
  • SB144 Provides relative to the review and adoption of textbooks and other instructional materials.
  • SB225 Provides relative to assets or property acquired or used by charter schools under certain circumstances.
  • SB312 Enacts the “Parents’ Bill of Rights”.
  • SB358 Provides relative to the Louisiana Granting Resources and Autonomy for Diplomas Act to provide that certain high level autonomies relative to procurement apply to certain institutions under a shared service model.
  • SB366 Requires BESE to develop a master plan for K-12 education.
  • SB598 Authorizes appropriate early childhood programs to engage in cooperative purchasing.
  • SB599 Provides relative to TOPS reporting requirements.
  • SB635 Moves the Cecil J. Picard Educational and Recreational Center from the Department of Education to the office of juvenile justice.

Labor & Industrial Relations. At adjournment in Committee Room C. Agenda includes:

  • SB159 Provides relative to definition of wages.
  • SB359 Limits penalty for failure to pay wages.
  • SB372 To provide for auditing of employer records for unemployment compensation.
  • SB412 Provides with respect to retaliation in employment.

Local & Municipal Affairs. At adjournment in Committee Room F. Agenda includes: Removed: SB 579, HB 577

  • HB97 Provides relative to a sales and use tax for the Union Parish School Board.
  • HB173 Provides relative to the Sherwood Forest Crime Prevention and Neighborhood Improvement District.
  • HB201 Provides relative to the powers granted to the mayor pro tempore in a Lawrason Act municipality.
  • HB253 Authorizes the governing authority of St. Tammany Parish to create a geographic information system district.
  • HB456 Provides that the position of police chief for the city of Covington is in the unclassified service.
  • HB576 Exempts Mandeville from certain laws regarding wages and hours of police officers.
  • HB579 Grants the governing authority of the city of Sulphur the power to grant certain powers and duties to the city’s zoning commission.
  • HB904 Provides relative to the civil service status of employees of the Cottonport Housing Authority.
  • HB1012 Provides relative to a special taxing district in Jefferson Parish.
  • SB425 Provides relative to private water supply or sewer system providers.
  • SB593 Limits the number of terms of office of any elected official of certain municipalities.
  • SB674 To provide relative to incorporation of unincorporated areas.

Transportation, Highways, & Public Works. At adjournment in Committee Room E. Agenda includes:

  • HB254 Provides relative to leasing of certain marina facilities operated by Jefferson Parish.
  • HB316 Exempts single axle two-wheel trailers from motor vehicle inspection requirements.
  • HB364 Provides for suspension and seizure of a person’s driver’s license.
  • HB419 Provides relative to access to public drainage for maintenance purposes.
  • HB655 Requires a person applying for a commercial driver’s license to provide a current medical examiner’s certificate.
  • HB860 Provides for the registration expiration date for certain commercial trucks and trailers.
  • HB896 Prohibits the use of photo speed enforcement devices on interstates.
  • SB79 Provides relative to flood protection authorities.
  • SB316 Provides relative to payments under public contracts.(8/1/14).
  • SB552 Provide relative to early contractor involvement (ECI) method for public contracts.
  • SB644 Provides relative to disposition of traffic citations on state highways.
  • SCR63 Requests DOTD to take action to provide greater safety to the motoring public at the intersection of Thomas Road and Scenic Highway in East Baton Rouge Parish..

 

Source: Louisiana News Bureau

Landrieu: Let people vote

Promoting it as a health care and economic issue, U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu pushed Tuesday for Louisiana voters to decide the fate of Medicaid expansion.

“The governor has clearly put his political future ahead of the future of the state of Louisiana,” said Landrieu, D-La. “Let the people decide what is fair, whether they want to expand and use over $16 billion” in federal funds.

“It’s kind of our last hope to let the people make the decision. It’s not too much to ask,” said Landrieu.

The federal Affordable Care Act contains a provision under which the federal government would pay 100 percent of the expansion cost the first three years and no less than 90 percent in the ensuing years. The U.S. Supreme Court said states had an option of participating.

Gov. Bobby Jindal has rejected the Medicaid expansion which would cover residents whose incomes are at or below 138 percent of the federal poverty level. For an individual, it is $15,856 and for a family of four, $32,499. Jindal claims it would cost the state too much money long-term and it builds on a broken federal Medical program.

Landrieu led a conference call with state Sen. Ben Nevers, D-Bogalusa, and state Rep. Patricia Smith, D-Baton Rouge, sponsors of proposed constitutional amendments that would provide nearly 250,000 mainly working adults with health insurance coverage

Nevers said his Senate Bill 96 would be heard next week in the Senate Health and Welfare Committee. The proposed constitutional amendment would direct the state Department of Health and Hospitals, effective Jan. 1, 2015, to administer a state program providing access to health insurance to legal residents whose income is at or below 138 percent of the federal poverty level. The proposition would be submitted to voters Nov. 4 if it wins approval by a two-thirds vote of the state Senate and House.

Landrieu said the proposition makes good economic sense. “In order to have a strong workforce you need a healthy workforce,” she said. She said the state is rejecting $16 billion available “to strengthen the work force.”

Tea Party Express backs Dietzel

Sixth Congressional District candidate Paul Dietzel has received the endorsement of the Tea Party Express, the nation’s largest Tea Party political action committee.

“At only 28 years old, Paul has amassed an impressive resume,including building an extremely successful technology company from scratch,” Tea Party Express executive director Taylor Budowich said in a statement.

“However, the most impressive thing about Paul is not just his background as a successful businessman, but rather his strong desire to change the big-spending culture in Washington D.C.,” Budowich said of the Republican Paul.

“Paul has pledged to take on the special interests in the nation’s capital and to truly represent the people in Louisiana’s 6th district.”

He said Dietzel is not a career politician and “represents a breath of fresh air that is much needed in Washington, D.C.”

The Tea Party Express supported Dietzel because he supports cutting taxes, reducing burdensome regulations, repealing Obamacare and “balancing our nation’s budget through economic growth and ending wasteful government spending,” Budowich said.

Panel OKs heroin penalty hike

A state Senate panel advanced legislation Tuesday that could bring 99 year prison sentences for distributors of heroin.

The measure comes with heroin-related deaths soaring, particularly in south Louisiana. It is part of efforts to discourage those responsible for the drug distribution from operating in Louisiana.

“The point I’m trying to make here is that if you want to kill a snake you don’t cut off the tail, you cut off the head,” said bill sponsor state Sen. Dan Claitor, R-Baton Rouge.

Senate Bill 87 would give judges the discretion of imposing a 99-year prison term. Under current law, the maximum sentence is 50 years. The mandatory minimum of five years would stay in effect.

When he was a prosecutor in Orleans Parish years ago, Claitor said heroin distribution brought a life sentence.

“The people distributing heroin deserve it” because the drug is a death sentence for some, Claitor said. He said the drug is also a life sentence for others because when people get on they never get off of it.

“If I had my druthers, I’d go back to life,” Claitor said.

The  Senate Committee on Judiciary C shipped the legislation to the Senate floor for further debate.

State Sen. Bodi White, R-Central, noted the rash of heroin overdose deaths occurring in East Baton Rouge, with the coroner arriving to find  the deceased “still having a needle in their arm.”

From 2012 to 2013, the number of heroin deaths increased from 5 to 34 in East Baton Rouge and the trend is continuing this year.

Nevers not David, Jindal not Goliath

Democrats are pushing legislation that would call for a statewide vote on whether Louisiana should accept the federal dollars and expand the rolls of Medicaid. Facing a Republican-dominated Louisiana Legislature and the opposition of Gov. Bobby Jindal, many believe that there’s not much hope it’ll pass.

State Sen. Ben Nevers, D-Bogalusa, says when he’s asked why he’s pushing that legislation against such odds, he answers: “I’m certainly not a David, but I’ll tell you what, our governor is not a Goliath either. It’s time we the people stood up and said why would we want to turn down $16 billion over the next 10 years.”

Tuesday at the Louisiana Legislature

House convenes at 2:00 p.m.
Senate convenes at 5:00 p.m.

HOUSE COMMITTEE MEETINGS
Appropriations. 9:00 a.m. in Committee Room 5. Agenda includes: Added: HB 142, HB 664
Removed: HB 724, HB 865

  • HB142 Provides for a 10% reduction of all state professional, personal, and consulting service contracts and provides for deposit of the savings into the Higher Education Financing Fund.
  • HB389 Provides relative to the casino support services contract.
  • HB444 Provides for the availability of the executive budget to members of the legislature 14 days prior to submission to the Joint Legislative Committee on the Budget.
  • HB664 Provides for funds transferred to public and quasi-public entities which are not budget units of the state.
  • HB805 Provides for required information from entities with state contracts.
  • HB853 Provides for information included in the executive budget and the General Appropriation Bill.

Civil Law & Procedure. 9:00 a.m. in Committee Room 4. Agenda includes: Time changed to 9:00 AM
Added: HB 125, HB 338, HB 799

  • HB125 Provides for the statewide election of the state superintendent of education.
  • HB271 Provides relative to paternity.
  • HB338 Provides relative to the effective period of a temporary restraining order under certain circumstances.
  • HB412 Provides with respect to the payment of court costs and attorney fees in certain cases.
  • HB421 Provides relative to court-ordered treatment programs required for a parent with a history of family violence.
  • HB488 Authorizes agents of the tax collector to sell property for delinquent taxes and requires the fee of the authorized agent to be included within the costs recoverable in the tax sale.
  • HB505 Provides limitation of liability for employers of convicted offenders.
  • HB545 Requires certification by landlords that rental properties are free of toxic mold.
  • HB591 Provides relative to parental rights.
  • HB654 Provides relative to the rights of military personnel to terminate a lease.
  • HB799 Provides relative to the employment of special attorneys or counsel.
  • HB856 Provides relative to child custody.
  • HB862 Provides relative to the enforcement of the coastal management program.
  • HB1114 Provides relative to successions and donations.
  • HB1122 Provides for the Protection From Stalking Act.
  • HB1165 Provides for liability for civil damages against persons alleging certain unsubstantiated acts of malfeasance in office against elected officials.
  • HB1196 Authorizes retired justices of the peace to perform certain duties relative to waivers.
  • HCR63 Authorizes and directs the Louisiana State Law Institute to study and make recommendations regarding the law of lesion beyond moiety.

Commerce. 9:30 a.m. in Committee Room 1. Agenda includes:

  • HB429 Authorizes the collection of a handling fee for the rental of heavy equipment.
  • HB570 Provides relative to carbon monoxide detectors.
  • HB1188 Requires state contractors and subcontractors to pay workers performing such contract a minimum wage.
  • SB265 Provides relative to registration of securities.
  • SB287 Re-creates the Department of Public Service.
  • SB288 Re-creates entities transferred to or placed within the office of the governor.
  • SB362 Provides relative to licensing renewal dates for currency exchange services through use of an electronic system.

Transportation, Highways & Public Works. 9:30 a.m. in Committee Room 3. Agenda includes: Removed: HB 908, HB 1139, HB 1237

  • HB907 Provides for the issuance of REAL ID compliant driver’s licenses and special identification cards.
  • HB939 Provides for driver’s licenses and special identification cards not compliant with the REAL ID Act of 2005.
  • HB966 Provides relative to required documentation for the issuance of driver’s licenses and special identification cards.
  • HB979 Provides for the creation of the Louisiana Transportation Infrastructure Bank.
  • HB1123 Increases the truck registration fee.
  • HB1146 Requires vehicles in adajcent lanes to stop for all buses loading or unloading passengers.
  • HB1182 Requires a traffic signal on La. Hwy. 182 and Fairview Drive in Berwick, Louisiana.
  • HB1219 Provides for the waiver of any increase in the renewal fee of a driver’s license for persons returning from military service.
  • HR66 Urges and requests the Department of Transportation and Development to conduct a traffic study at the United States 171-Moeling Street intersection in Calcasieu Parish.

Ways and Means. 10:00 a.m. in Committee Room 6. Agenda includes: Removed: HB 1170, HB 1202

  • HB236 Authorizes the office of debt recovery to utilize the offset of certain gaming winnings as a means to collect delinquent debt owed to state agencies.
  • HB463 Provides for the forgiveness of loans to the city of New Orleans under the Local Debt Service Assistance Program.
  • HB824 Provides relative to the application fee for projects applying for the rehabilitation of historic structures tax credit applicable to nonresidential property.
  • HB1118 Changes requirements for public hearings at which millage adjustments are considered by certain taxing authorities.
  • HB1119 Changes the deadline for submission of reports by agencies which administer certain tax incentives and authorizes electronic submission of such reports.
  • HB1137 Creates individual income tax checkoffs for The Louisiana Association for the Blind, the Louisiana Center for the Blind, and Affiliated Blind of Louisiana, Inc..
  • HB1175 Provides with respect to the issuance of bonds, notes, or other indebtedness of certain political subdivsisions.
  • SB58 Changes the Louisiana Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society to the National Multiple Sclerosis Society as an entity to which donations may be made on individual tax returns.

SENATE COMMITTEE MEETINGS
Agriculture. 10:30 a.m. in Committee Room C. Agenda includes:

  • HB119 Revises a certain highway intersection designation in the statutory list of public highways prohibiting livestock at large.
  • SB631 Provides relative to turtle farmer license requirements.
  • SCR41 Requests the United States Department of Agriculture to develop tastier food options for the National School Lunch Program..

Commerce. 1:00 p.m. in Committee Room E. Agenda includes: Removed SB 158, SB 378, SB 424

  • SB66 Provides relative to the Louisiana State Board of Home Inspectors.
  • SB121 Clarifies certain definitions within the Louisiana Mental Health Counselor Licensing Act.
  • SB167 Provides relative to the Board of Dentistry.
  • SB266 Provides relative to the registration of certain investment adviser representatives.
  • SB299 Provides relative to civil justice funding companies.
  • SB426 Prohibits required use of settlement service providers in residential real estate transactions.
  • SB447 Requires the State Licensing Board for Contractors to provide testing specifically for solar installers.
  • SB483 Repeals certain outdated information collection and reporting requirements of the Louisiana Deferred Presentment and Small Loan Act.
  • SB573 Creates the office of multimodal commerce in the Department of Economic Development and Multimodal Commerce created from a restructured Department of Economic Development, and transfers powers, duties, and responsibilities with respect to multimodal commerce and corresponding department employees, equipment, facilities, funding, and statutory entities from the Department of Transportation and Development to such office and department.
  • SB605 Provides relative to marine products.
  • SB637 Provides relative to the Louisiana State Board of Cosmetology.

Environmental Quality. 9:00 a.m. in Committee Room A. Agenda includes:

  • HB1075 Provides for disposing of cigarettes and cigarette butts as litter.
  • SB407 Provides for preemption under the Right-to-Know Law.
  • SB650 Authorizes the Department of Environmental Quality to establish regulations on carbon dioxide emissions from existing fossil fuel-fired electric generating units.
  • SB664 Authorizes the commissioner of agriculture and forestry to receive and investigate complaints about prescribed burns and to revoke his authorization in certain situations.

Health & Welfare. 1:00 p.m. in John J. Hainkel, Jr. Room. Agenda includes: Added: HB 746

  • HB63 Revises terminology referring to persons with disabilities and other persons with exceptionalities.
  • HB513 Requires the Department of Health and Hospitals to provide information concerning velocardiofacial syndrome and 22q11.2 deletion syndrome.
  • HB736 Provides relative to the Louisiana Commission on HIV, AIDS, and Hepatitis C.
  • HB746 Prohibits the use of tanning equipment by a minor.
  • HB833 Creates the ABLE Account savings program for persons with significant disabilities.
  • HB891 Authorizes access to investigational treatments for terminally ill patients.
  • HCR20 Recognizes No-Shave November in Louisiana, an effort to raise awareness of men’s health issues.
  • SB341 Provides for certain limitations relative to actions or rules requiring modification of certain existing community water systems.
  • SB497 Provides for the payment of health care services.
  • SB501 Provides for telemedicine.
  • SB516 Provides for direct primary care.
  • SB539 Provides relative to suicide assessment, intervention, treatment, and management training for certain professions.
  • SB545 Provides relative to third party initiated medication substitutions.
  • SB619 Transfers the powers, duties, and functions relative to regulating pain management clinics from the Department of Health and Hospitals to the Louisiana State Board of Medical Examiners.
  • SB621 Provides for compensation for home and community-based health care services.
  • SCR62 Requests the Department of Health and Hospitals to seek a Medicaid state plan amendment from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to include as a Medicaid service the Tdap vaccine to pregnant women and to provide a cost analysis to the legislature for providing this Medicaid service..

Insurance. 1:00 p.m. in Committee Room A. Agenda includes:

  • SB69 Prohibits insurers from excluding from coverage the intentional acts of policy holders’ minor child.
  • SB165 Provides relative to prescription drug specialty tiers.
  • SB221 Provides relative to premiums.
  • SB403 Provides relative to third party payments of health insurance premiums of individuals with HIV/AIDS.
  • SB554 Provides relative to insurance rate review and approval.
  • SB645 Relative to certain health maintenance organization disclosures.

Judiciary A. 9:00 a.m. in John J. Hainkel, Jr. Room. Agenda includes: Removed: SB 445

  • SB233 Provides relative to the Louisiana Equal Housing Opportunity Act.
  • SB302 Provides relative to medical consent and certain immunities.
  • SB308 Provides relative to the fundamental rights of parents.
  • SB373 Provides relative to motions for summary judgments.
  • SB586 Provides relative to adoptions and prohibits the re-homing of a child.
  • SB606 Provides for the use of electronic signatures by judges and justices.

Judiciary B. 9:30 a.m. in Committee Room E. Agenda includes:

  • HB55 Revises provisions of law regarding expungement.
  • HB480 Designates “Louisiana Collector Car Appreciation” weekend the second weekend in July.
  • SB229 Provides relative to reducing certain habitual offender sentences.
  • SB242 Provides relative to sheriffs appointing non-licensed appraisers.
  • SB361 Provides for the carrying of concealed weapons by certain law enforcement officers in all public places.
  • SB571 Requires the Louisiana Bureau of Criminal Identification and Information to make certain records available to public defenders.
  • SB608 Provides relative to arrest warrants.
  • SCR40 Reduces the amount of insurance required of licensed private security companies for care, custody, and control from $500,000 to $100,000..

Judiciary C. 9:30 a.m. in Committee Room F. Agenda includes:

  • HB212 Adds certain compounds to the Uniform Controlled Dangerous Substances Law.
  • HB229 Adds substances to the listing of Schedule I controlled dangerous substances.
  • HB308 Increases the possible term of imprisonment for the crime of aggravated flight from an officer.
  • HB414 Amends responsive verdicts for theft and attempted theft.
  • HB544 Provides penalties for fire prevention interference.
  • HB741 Provides for a contradictory hearing for a motion to withdraw a guilty plea.
  • SB63 Provides criminal penalties for claiming a tax credit when a contractor has failed to meet contractual obligations relative to installation and maintenance of solar electric or thermal systems.
  • SB87 Increases the maximum term of imprisonment for possession or distribution of heroin to 99 years.
  • SB187 Allows enhanced sentencing for drug offenses committed in a private residence located in a drug free zone.
  • SB293 Provides relative to operating a vehicle while intoxicated.
  • SB330 Creates the crime of illegal use of unmanned aircraft to capture images (DRONE Act).
  • SB592 Provides relative to penalties for second degree battery.

Senate & Governmental Affairs. 1:00 p.m. in Committee Room F. Agenda includes:

  • SB108 Provides relative to the commissioner of higher education.
  • SB161 Provides relative to restitution of audit costs.
  • SB271 Provides relative to vacancy in the office of a judge.
  • SB300 Provides relative to the inspector general.
  • SB332 Provides bidding documents prior to opening bids are not subject to public records requirements.
  • SB353 Provides that certain records relative to jury selection and jurors are not public records.
  • SB415 Provides a framework for decreasing the number of judges.
  • SB446 Provides relative to public records.
  • SB630 Provides for the qualification of a newspaper to publish official proceedings, legal notices, or advertisements in Orleans Parish or Jefferson Parish.
  • SB642 Increases annual audit requirements for certain entities in certain parishes.
  • SB649 Provides for the Louisiana State Health Care Profession Institute.

 

Source:  Louisiana News Bureau

Jindal won’t weigh in on Vitter

Gov. Bobby Jindal continued Monday to call for  ”kissing congressman” Vance McAllister’s resignation.

But Jindal refused to weigh in on questions about the “double standard” of Republicans who continued to support U.S. Sen. David Vitter after his name surfaced in a prostitution scandal some years ago.

Democrats and others are trying to link the two but “I’m not going to go down that path,” Jindal said during a news conference.

McAllister’s action has been an embarrassment to the state and the U.S. House, Jindal said. He said  McAllister had asked for privacy  “to work things out with his family” and  the best way to get that privacy is for McAllister to resign.

McAllister has been out of the public eye since the recent disclosure of video footage of him in a lengthy amorous embrace with a married staffer in his Monroe district office. He had campaigned on family values in the special election he won last fall.

 

 

Vitter rallies against taxes, stays mum on McAllister

While there’s no doubt many Louisiana political watchers would like to hear what U.S. Sen. David Vitter thinks about the scandal revolving around his congressional colleague, U.S. Rep. Vance McAllister, Louisiana’s junior senator wasn’t talking on Saturday.

McAllister, of course, is the Swartz Republican now known as the “Kissing Congressman” after a video surfaced last week showing him sharing a lengthy kiss with a married staffer in his district office in Monroe.

And while Gov. Bobby Jindal and a host of other prominent Louisiana Republicans have called on McAllister to resign, Vitter’s take on the situation has become especially sought after considering he famously survived his own public embarrasment — a 2007 prostitution scandal.

But so far, Vitter has been mum on the issue. The Republican Senator was in Baton Rouge for the “Tax Day Rally” put on by the Louisiana chapter of Americans for Prosperity, but he politely declined to take questions from reporters.

Vitter did however throw some red meat to the anti-tax crowd. He spoke for roughly 10 minutes, using his time on stage to stir up anti-tax sentiment just three days before tax day.

He called April 15 a “national day of mourning for hard working Americans.” He said the average American has to work January through April just to make enough money to pay their tax bills handed down from Washington, D.C.

It’s only after April, or sometimes May, when people “start working for themselves and not the government,” he said.

Vitter called on the crowd to make their voices heard in the Nov. 4 elections when voters will decide whether to keep U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu as the state’s senior senator. He also told the crowd he’d need their help next year during Louisiana’s gubernatorial election.

“Next year, I’m going to be trying to take on a new set of challenges,” he said. “Louisiana can be a great laboratory for conservative, reform ideals.”

Northwestern State president to retire

Northwestern State University President Randall J. Webb informed faculty and staff Friday that he will retire later this year. He’s served as Northwestern’s president since 1996.

In a message to the university community, Webb said his retirement date will be based on how quickly the University of Louisiana System Board of Supervisors can find his replacement.

“I want to ensure that we effect a smooth transition for the incoming president,” he said.

Webb added that he and his wife, Brenda “owe a debt of gratitude” to faculty, staff, students and alumni.

“Indeed, we feel our lives have been blessed beyond measure because of people who have graciously supported us and the cause of our beloved university.”

House Democratic leader: GOP, Jindal are hypo-hypocritical

House Democratic leader John Bel Edwards, of Amite, raised the question Friday of why U.S. Rep. Vance McAllister’s extramarital kiss was so objectionable to the state’s Republican officials.

“While I am as disappointed as anyone to see Louisiana embarrassed, yet again, by an elected official who professes family values in public but practices something else entirely in private, I can’t help but ask why Senator Vitter is not held to the same standard as Congressman McAllister,” he said.  “Everyone from Governor Jindal to the party chairman are calling for his resignation because he was caught kissing a married woman.  But when Senator Vitter was caught in a prostitution scandal these same people rushed to his defense.  Am I missing something here?”

Vitter, R-La., admitted to a serious sin in 2007 after his phone number was found in a madam’s records. McAllister, R-Swartz, got caught on videotape locked in a passionate embrace with an aide. Both men are married with children.

Roger Villere Jr., the chairman of the Republican Party of Louisiana, and Gov. Bobby Jindal have called on McAllister to resign. So far, McAllister is ignoring their request.  Neither Villere nor Jindal will respond to questions about how McAllister’s indiscretion is worse than Vitter’s serious sin. Republican leaders did not call on Vitter to resign.

Edwards and Vitter are running against each other for governor next year.
“The Republican Party calling Rep. McAllister a ‘hypocrite’ after it defended Sen. Vitter reaches a level of hypocrisy so great I’m not sure the English language even has a word describe it. Maybe ‘hypo-hypocrisy?’  The people at Webster’s Dictionary have a busy weekend ahead of them,” Edwards said.