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Politics
12:44 pm
Mon April 22, 2013

Tobacco Tax Hike Proposals Shelved

All four bills seeking to increase taxes on tobacco products in the state have been voluntarily tabled amid legislative opposition to raising taxes.

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Capitol Access
9:24 am
Mon April 22, 2013

Women's Health Funding at Risk

Louisiana House Speaker Chuck Kleckley last week called on the legislature to restore funding to the state program that provides breast and cervical cancer screenings to uninsured and underserved women, and Sen. Karen Carter Peterson chaired a committee focused on funding for women’s services.

Women testified about holes in funding for domestic violence shelters, pregnancy care, cancer screenings, and sexual health. Peterson called Governor Jindal’s budget proposal for next year irresponsible. According to Beth Meeks, from the Louisiana Coalition on Domestic Violence, the governor’s slashing of women’s services just doesn’t make fiscal sense.

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Capitol Access
9:36 am
Fri April 19, 2013

Southeast School District Tries Again

The slice of east Baton Rouge between Interstates 10 and 12 may be a step closer to seeing its own school district.

A constitutional amendment that would have funded the district failed to pass in the House last year. The same measure passed through the Senate Education committee Thursday without much debate.

Parents that live from Inniswold to Shenndoah testified that they just want to make schools safer and more academically successful for their children, like Norman Browning, president of the pro-breakaway group ‘Local Schools for Local Children.’

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Capitol Access
12:51 pm
Thu April 18, 2013

Legislature Picky on Spending

State lawmakers are being more sensitive to how they spend money.

A bill containing minor change to the state’s Enterprise Zone program failed to pass in the House Thursday.

The Enterprise Zone is an incentive program that works to encourage businesses to expand in rural parts of the state. The bill would have changed the definition of a “multifamily residential housing”, making bigger apartment complexes eligible for a tax credit. 

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Capitol Access
9:23 am
Thu April 18, 2013

Gun Rights Bills Progress at Capitol

Seven of eight bills to loosen restrictions on firearms passed through the House Administration of Criminal Justice Committee Wednesday.

One bill seeks to circumvent federal restrictions on semi-automatic firearms, despite several members questioning how it would stand up to the Supremacy Clause, which establishes federal law as the law of the land.

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Music
1:00 am
Thu April 18, 2013

New Artists, New Sound, Still Authentically Louisiana

Credit The Oxford American

Festival season is upon us and there are plenty of opportunities to boogie down to Louisiana music - both old and new. Some new artists bringing a different sound to the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival this year are Luke Winslow-King, Hurray for the Riff Raff, and Alexis and the Samurai.

Alex Rawls, a New Orleans-based writer and editor who runs the music and culture website MySpiltMilk.com, was the guest editor of The Oxford American magazine’s 2012 Southern Music Issue, which was entirely dedicated to all things Louisiana music. He also helped put together its accompanying album.

And Rawls tells WRKF’s Ashley Westerman that even though this new music comes from a younger generation and may sound a little different - it is still authentically Louisiana.

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Politics
4:28 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Firearm Lock-Up Bill Extinguished

A bill requiring gun owners to store firearms in locked containers died in a House committee Wednesday.

In the wake of the Connecticut shootings a bevy of firearm regulation bills were presented before the Administration of Criminal Justice committee.

Committee members who voted against the lock-up bill said accidents happen and that negligence laws are already on the books.  

Rep. Barbara Norton said her bill was aimed at curbing accidental fatalities and protecting our children.

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The Second Amendment
12:22 pm
Wed April 17, 2013

Bill To Prohibit Federal Gun Regulations Squeaks By Committee

A bill that seeks to prohibit the enforcement of federal restrictions on semi-automatic firearms in Louisiana barely advanced Wednesday in the House.

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Capitol Access
8:39 am
Wed April 17, 2013

Income Tax Repeal Out, What's In?

After the legislature tabled all tax repeal bills, the Louisiana Legislative Black Caucus ditched the parts of its tax package that would cut taxes. But it’s keeping the part that raises revenue.

Representative Katrina Jackson leads the caucus. She says under her plan, the funds from raising the tobacco tax would be dedicated. “It starts making the areas of higher education systems whole, and the area of health care as well,” Jackson said.

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Education
5:56 am
Wed April 17, 2013

School Counselor, Librarian Mandates to Stand

The state's top school board has dropped plans to do away with requirements for counselors and librarians at public schools.

The Dept. of Education had recommended the change as part of a continuing push to give more flexibility to local administrators. The reversal came as a surprise to the dozens of critics who flocked to the BESE meeting to voice impassioned opposition Tuesday.

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