Capitol Access

Weekdays at the bottom of the hour during Morning Edition

Reports on Louisiana politics, government and the people shaping state policy.

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Wallis Watkins

Legislators will start grappling with a $1 billion budget shortfall next week.

Sen. Sharon Hewitt, a republican from Slidell, says budgeting becomes even harder when certain accounts automatically get money — they call these dedicated funds. 

Wallis Watkins

Gov. John Bel Edwards has called legislators into a special session starting Monday to address the state's looming budget crisis. Come July 1, Louisiana is set to lose more than a billion dollars in revenue. 

: Screenshot from ohiocheckbook.com

The Louisiana Association of Business and Industry (LABI) is one of the more powerful influencers inside the state capitol.

This year, they're focusing on government transparency, namely through the creation of a website called Louisiana Checkbook. LABI president Stephen Waguespack says it's about rebuilding people's trust in government. 

Wallis Watkins / WRKF

The legislative task force charged with re-examining the TOPS scholarship program in Louisiana approved a package of changes Wednesday. 

Martin via Flickr / creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nd/2.0/

After about six months of work, the TOPS task force is set to vote on potential changes to the popular state scholarship program Wednesday. 

Wallis Watkins

It remains to be seen how the state will address the budget shortfall for next fiscal year, when more than a billion dollars in tax increases expire. 

Wallis Watkins

When Louisiana rolls into the next fiscal year on July 1, state revenue will shrink by more than $1 billion as temporary tax increases expire. That drop in revenue is what's referred to as the fiscal cliff.

St. Joe H2O

Jan 26, 2018
courtesy: Garrett Boyte/Facebook

This is a happy ending story. "Thank you, for the citizens of St. Joseph," Mayor Elvadus Fields said to the Fiscal Review Committee on Thursday.

Not Doomsday, Critics Say

Jan 25, 2018
Pinterest

Remember this fable from childhood?

“The sky is falling! The sky is falling! A piece of it just hit me on the head!”

Critics and opponents of the governor are saying the so-called “doomsday budget” proposal released earlier this week amounts to “Chicken Little” tactics.

Sustaining Rebuilt Coastal Marshes

Jan 24, 2018
Louisiana Dept. of Wildlife and Fisheries

Dr. Robert Twilley, LSU Oceanic Studies professor and director of the Louisiana Sea Grant program, it’s time to rethink the premises upon which Louisiana is basing its coastal restoration projects.

"I doubt those marsh creations are going to have more than a 20-year lifecycle without modifying the way we manage the river," he told members of the Governor’s Coastal Advisory Commission Tuesday.

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