Louisiana legislature

Bill Feig / The Advocate

Whether you love it--like Vera Collins of Jefferson Parish, who says, “Louisiana’s Common Core State Standards is vital to making the dream a reality”—or hate it, like Ralph Roshto of Lacombe, who says, “Supporting Common Core is like a chicken supporting Colonel Sanders,”—Common Core is driving parents to the state capitol in droves.

But just what is this education issue that’s polarizing Louisiana moms and dads?

A bill that would impose tighter restrictions on abortion providers is headed to the House floor. Monroe Representative Katrina Jackson is the author of the measure, HB 388, which requires any doctor who performs more than five abortions annually to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of his or her practice. That rule is not just for those who perform surgical abortions, either. It’s required for doctors prescribing the so-called “abortion pill”, also known as RU-486.

It might seem obvious…when the U.S. Supreme Court rules a state law “unconstitutional”, then the state repeals that law. Baton Rouge Senator Dan Claitor has been trying to get one of those old laws off the books for several years now, but prior attempts never made it past the first hurdle—the Senate Education Committee. This time his repeal bill, SB 70, has made it to the Senate floor, and it’s eligible for debate there as early as today.

Each session, lawmakers file appropriations bills, trying to get the state to pay what courts have ruled is owed to plaintiffs.

This session, one of the 26 “Appropriations/Judgment” bills is authored by Crowley Representative Jack Montoucet, on behalf of the Louisiana Probation and Parole Officers Association. The amount due that group is $3,722,315.00.

State Retirement 101

Mar 14, 2014

Figuring out how to pay for retirement plans might not be the most scintillating topic, but it’s a growing issue for Louisiana lawmakers. Here’s why:

Just as with Social Security, active workers pay into the system while retirees take money out. The difference between the pension plan’s cash on hand and how much will be paid out over time is known as the unfunded accrued liability, or UAL. In Louisiana’s state retirement systems, the UALs have grown a lot lately.

New York Times Culture Reporter and author Dave Itzkoff joins the show to talk about his latest book Mad As Hell: The Making of "Network" and the Fateful Vision of the Angriest Man in Movies. Also, attorney, political pundit, and Louisiana state capitol watchdog C.B. Forgotston talks with Jim about the upcoming legislative session, as well as Governor Bobby Jindal's recent comments at the White House following the National Governors Association's annual meeting. And, entrepreneurial strategies developer and author of Venture Forth, the award winning guide to social enterprise, Rolfe Larson talks with Jim about the Social Enterprise for Nonprofits workshop which is coming to Baton Rouge on March 18th and 19th.


With some of the nation’s harshest punishments for marijuana possession and an ultra-conservative Republican governor at the helm, few would expect Louisiana might be the next state to allow folks to light up a joint. Yet one state lawmaker is planning to push to lighten up some pot laws during the upcoming legislative session.

A visit with noted composer Robert Kyr, who will perform his work "Waging Peace" this Sunday at the Broadmoor Baptist Church.

Jim talks with Haughton state Representative  Henry Burns about his bill allowing concealed carry gun permits holders to take their weapons into restaurants that serve liquor.

Advocate entertainment writer John Wirt drops by to discuss the passing of country music legend George Jones, and the purchase of the Advocate by John Georges.

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