Insight

Fridays at 5:51 a.m. and 7:51 a.m.

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Politics
7:55 am
Fri July 25, 2014

Insight: Common Core Dispute Probes Policymaking Through Procurement

Competing lawsuits were filed over the Common Core state standards in Louisiana this week, and specifically over the contracts for testing related to those standards.

Melinda Deslatte, capitol correspondent for the Associated Press, has been following the back and forth.


Politics
5:21 am
Fri July 18, 2014

Insight: Lots of Forgiveness in Congressional Elections; Lots of Money in Senate Race

A couple of this fall’s congressional races could be particularly entertaining — with the “kissing Congressman”, Vance McAllister running for re-election in the 5th District in northern Louisiana, and ex-con/ex-governor Edwin Edwards running here in the 6th District. Jeremy Alford, publisher of LaPolitics.com, says both will be asking voters for forgiveness. 

Meanwhile, the Republican field in the senate race got a little thinner this week, with State representative Paul Hollis of St. Tammany dropping out. Congressman Bill Cassidy, of course, is still the GOP frontrunner to unseat Mary Landrieu. But another Republican, retired Air Force Col. Rob Manness, who has Tea Party support, is proving to be a factor. And Alford says this Senate race is already the most expensive Louisiana has ever seen.


Politics
5:32 am
Fri July 11, 2014

Insight: Protection from Discrimination for LGBT People in Baton Rouge Too?

New Orleans passed a so-called "fairness ordinance" in 1999, banning discrimination in housing, employment and public accommodation. Shreveport followed suit last year. Later this month, the Baton Rouge Metro Council is slated to consider an ordinance to prohibit discrimination based on race, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, sex, veteran status, and, yes, gender identity and sexual orientation. But here it looks to be a tougher sell.

Rebekah Allen, city hall reporter for The Advocate, discusses the dynamics at play. 


Health
4:15 am
Fri July 4, 2014

Insight: Research Points to Cost Savings for Coverage of Obesity Treatment

In their long list of recommendations for how the state could save money, the Jindal administration's consultants, Alvarez & Marsal, suggested Louisiana could find a billion dollars in savings from the Office of Group Benefits (OGB) over the next five years -- largely by redesigning state employee health insurance plans and what they cover.

Dr. Phillip Brantley, senior scientist at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center, has been looking into whether specifically the state could save money by covering medical treatment for severe obesity. 

Education
5:12 am
Fri June 27, 2014

Insight: With Executive Order Over Common Core, Jindal Upends Testing Plans

Gov. Bobby Jindal issued an executive order last week canceling the testing contract that was meant to implement learning benchmarks once adopted by Louisiana and 44 other states.

And that has Jindal squaring off against the state superintendent and the president of the BESE board he hand-picked to push through major state education reforms in recent years.  

Melinda Deslatte, the Associated Press state capitol correspondent, discusses the clash.


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Business
4:43 am
Fri June 20, 2014

Insight: Entrepreneurial Spirit, Numbers, and Good Stories

Marketplace Host Kai Ryssdal

On June 30, WRKF is bringing the daily business show Marketplace back to the air, weekdays at 5:30 p.m. And you’ll hear the Marketplace Morning Report at 51 minutes past the hour during Morning Edition on weekday mornings.

The return of Marketplace gives us an excuse to talk with host, Kai Ryssdal, about how Louisiana fits in to the bigger economic picture.


Politics
6:20 am
Fri June 13, 2014

Insight: Super PACs Have Arrived in Louisiana Politics

 

The race for Senate is just starting to heat up. Sen. Mary Landrieu’s campaign started running a new TV ad recently.

Congressman Bill Cassidy, who is challenging Landrieu for her seat, released his first ad this week. 

Each cost hundreds of thousands of dollars to air. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg.

Jeremy Alford, publisher of LaPolitics.com, wrote this week about how the floodgates for campaign fundraising are opening up in Louisiana. 

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Insight
5:50 am
Fri June 6, 2014

Insight: Inside the Cost-Saving Report

Shortly after 3 p.m. on Monday, just a few hours before the final gavel came down on the legislative session, the Jindal administration unleashed a 400-plus page report from their consultants who had been asked to find recommendations for saving the state money.

Robert Travis Scott, President of the Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana, has been combing through the report.


Politics
1:24 am
Fri May 30, 2014

Insight: When Dust Settles on Legislative Session, Will Jindal's Legacy Be Intact?

State lawmakers have been showing an independent streak this session. Defying Gov. Bobby Jindal on some of his most defining policy positions that he’s hoping to keep on his resume as he looks beyond his time in the governor’s mansion. 


Politics
5:40 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Insight: Ideas to Balance State Budget in Short Supply

With just 10 days left in the legislative session, we’re down to the nitty gritty: lawmakers are trying to figure out how to sew up the state budget. And earlier this week, the Revenue Estimating Committee rebuffed the Jindal administration’s wish to include $54 million in revenue that could come with changes to how the state Dept. of Revenue does its tax collecting, according to a group of consultants on the hunt for savings in the state budget.


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