A coalition of state representatives is pushing a slew of bills and amendments to reform Louisiana’s budget process. The lawmakers are fed up with rushed legislation, cutting higher education and healthcare year after year, and procedural tomfoolery.
The state employee retirement reforms Gov. Bobby Jindal pushed last session were overturned in court last week. Monday, a state committee heard testimony about changes to the firefighters' retirement system that could be considered by the legislature this spring.
The Teachers’ Retirement System of Louisiana reported earlier this month that the number of its members retiring from jobs in K-12 education jumped by more than 25 percent last year. The spike came after the legislature passed changes to the way teachers are evaluated, compensated and awarded tenure.
The retirement system’s figures include people retiring from food service, and other non-classroom jobs. And State Superintendent John White says the figures are misleading.
He says the number of teachers leaving the classroom for any reason – including promotion to administrative positions – has in fact remained steady at around 12 percent over the past three years.
Starting this fall high school football teams in Louisiana will compete in separate playoff divisions: one for select admission schools – such as private and parochial schools – and another for non-select public schools.
On Tuesday, Nebraska Gov. Dave Heineman approved an adjusted route for the Keystone XL Pipeline that avoids that state’s fragile Sand Hills. Soon after, 53 senators – including both from Louisiana – wrote a letter to President Obama supporting the project.
The state-affiliated Water Institute, founded in 2011, touts itself as an independent organization that’s bringing the best scientists in the nation together to conduct research and recommend policies to the state on how to preserve the eroding coast.