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Affordable Care Act
5:43 am
Fri March 15, 2013

PAR: More Info Needed to Make Medicaid Expansion Decision for Louisiana

Don Gregory, Principle Health Adviser for the Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana
Credit WRKF

The state legislature’s Joint Insurance Committee met Wednesday to discuss the Affordable Care Act and two crucial, yet voluntary, measures: setting up state health insurance exchanges and expanding Medicaid.

At that meeting a representative from the Public Affairs Research Council said Louisiana doesn’t have enough information to make a truly informed decision on implementing the healthcare reform law.

PAR’s Principle Health Advisor Don Gregory recently authored a study about the research done so far on the implications of expanding Medicaid in Louisiana. He says other states have worked to figure out not just the costs, but also the benefits of insuring the uninsured.


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Education
3:25 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

School Turnaround Funds Repurposed

Federal funds dedicated to the turnaround of struggling Louisiana public schools have been repurposed.

The state Department of Education is using $5 million to issue grants to conceive new schools and allow high-performing schools to take on more students.

Almost 200,000 students are attending schools rated D or F. State Supt. John White said traditional public school systems that have been getting turnaround money are not drawing down that number.

“The pace of change has just not been fast enough for us not to consider a new path,” White said.  

Politics
3:23 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Jindal Addresses Bayou Corne's Sinkhole Problem

Gov. Bobby Jindal and other state and local officials met with Texas Brine representatives on March 13. The company responsible for a giant sinkhole in Assumption Parish is sending appraisers to some evacuated homes in Bayou Corne on Monday.

The Governor said company officials will also meet with the State Attorney General’s office on Monday. He said Texas Brine owes state and local governments 4 million dollars, combined, for costs incurred dealing with the disaster.

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Tax Reforms
1:31 pm
Thu March 14, 2013

Jindal Promises Revenue Neutral Tax Swap

Gov. Bobby Jindal went before the legislature Thursday to unveil his tax proposal. He wants to eliminate the income tax and says the state can make up the gap with a higher and more expansive sales tax.

The proposal would make Louisiana the state with the highest sales tax in the nation. Combined with local sales taxes, Louisianians would pay an average of 10.75 percent in sales tax. And the state would start taxing things that haven’t been taxed before – like landscaping, haircuts, and cable and Internet services.

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Conversations in Medicine
10:57 am
Thu March 14, 2013

Physicians Explore Alternative Approaches to Alzheimer's Care

Physicians treating patients with Alzheimer's are exploring new approaches to caring for people with the disease. Barbara Auten, Executive Director of Alzheimer's Services of the Capital Area, is looking forward to the Keynote Address to be given by Dr. G. Allen Power at the 20th Annual Education Conference on Alzheimer's Disease: "Thinking  Outside the Medicine Bag: Alternative Approaches to Care for People with Alzheimer's."

Barbara Auten

Opinion
5:24 am
Thu March 14, 2013

From Private School to Public, a Family Leaps

The Thomas family.

All but a handful of East Baton Rouge Parish public schools are labeled as poor performers by the state. That’s prompted exodus—individual students leaving the district through the private school voucher program; and a group in southeast Baton Rouge is trying to form a new breakaway district, taking with it some of the newer school buildings and a big chunk of the tax base.

But Commentator Carlos Thomas and his family are putting their faith in the parish school system.

To share your commentary, email news@wrkf.org.

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The Jim Engster Show
11:50 am
Wed March 13, 2013

THURSDAY: Child Welfare Expert Dr. Mark Courtney, Ad Exec Hunter Territo, Dan Borne

Jim talks with child welfare specialist Dr. Mark Courtney, from the University of Chicago, about foster care in Louisiana, and the challenges and problems therein. He's joined by Dana Hunter, from LSU's School of Social Work.

Advertising executive Hunter Territo, President of the American Advertising Federation - Baton Rouge, discusses the latest news on Governor Jindal's proposed tax reforms, and a threatened tax on media advertising.

Dan Borne, President of The LA Chemical Association and a deacon in the Catholic Church, talks about the new pontiff, Pope Francis I.

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Affordable Care Act
3:08 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

Rep. Cassidy Co-Sponsors "Defund Obamacare Act"

Republican Congressman Bill Cassidy has signed on to legislation that aims to defund President Obama’s health care reform law.

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The Jim Engster Show
12:03 pm
Tue March 12, 2013

WEDNESDAY: Education Expert Diane Ravitch, Actress Debbie Allen, BR Ballet's Molly Buchmann

Jim chats with education historian and former Assistant Secretary of Education Diane Ravitch talks about education reforms in Louisiana and recent court rulings against their constitutionality.

Actress, dancer, choreographer, producer & director Debbie Allen visits to talk about her annual  Debbie Allen Dance Academy performance here in Baton Rouge; a tribute to former Arts Council of GBR director Derek Gordon, who passed away last year.

Baton Rouge Ballet Artistic Director Molly Buchmann talks about the annual Spring Concert and other upcoming events.


Tax Overhaul
6:20 pm
Mon March 11, 2013

Revenue Neutral Tax Overhaul a Tall Order

Gov. Jindal has promised that his proposal to eliminate the state income tax will be “revenue neutral to avoid budget cuts. 
 


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