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Capitol Access
3:00 am
Fri May 2, 2014

Senate Committee Turns Down the MFP

 

The Senate Education Committee took testimony on the MFP Thursday, and ended up rejecting the formula for funding public schools.

The formula included $150-million in new spending: for a growing number of students, for career education and for kids with special needs. On a conference call following the committee meeting, state Superintendent John White said he’s not worried about students losing out, despite the formula being turned away. That’s because House Appropriations already added the extra money to HB 1, the next state budget.

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Capitol Access
3:00 am
Thu May 1, 2014

Medical Marijuana Bill Snuffed Out

Former state senator Tony Guarisco testifies on medical marijuana bill.
Credit Sue Lincoln


Louisiana’s legislature approved medical marijuana for certain diseases in 1991. Twenty-three years later, a bill that would finally set up a prescription system for dispensing the drug was heard in Senate Health and Welfare Wednesday.

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Capitol Access
3:00 am
Wed April 30, 2014

Senate Drones Bill Crashes in House Committee

A Senate-approved bill to prohibit the camera-equipped unmanned aircraft known as drones from overflying chemical plants and refineries crashed and burned in the House Criminal Justice Committee Tuesday.

“Drones are becoming more and more prevalent,” explained the bill’s author, Baton Rouge Senator Bodi White. “And it’s just an effort to try to at least have some rules or laws for the state of Louisiana with our critical infrastructure.”

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Culture
6:20 am
Tue April 29, 2014

Poet Laureate Spreads the Word About Louisiana Poetry

Ava Leavell Haymon

 In honor of National Poetry Month, Ann Marie Awad sat down to talk with Ava Leavell Haymon, Louisiana’s Poet Laureate. She’s on a mission to change the way the rest of the world looks at the state of Louisiana through poetry. 

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Capitol Access
3:00 am
Tue April 29, 2014

Coastal Restoration Fund Maneuver Used to Balance Budget

  “There’s no one-time money for recurring expenditures in the budget,” Commissioner of Administration Kristy Nichols guaranteed from the start of this year’s budget process. Yet as the House Appropriations Committee worked to modify and approve Governor Jindal’s budget proposal for the upcoming fiscal year, the secret behind “no one-time money” was revealed.

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Capitol Access
3:00 am
Mon April 28, 2014

Kumbayah Moment: Teacher Termination Compromise

Although they didn’t actually “hold hands and sing Kumbayah”, there was a brief moment of peace and accord between the Jindal administration and teachers unions last week. After more than two years of name-calling, angst and lawsuits, they found common ground around a bill to modify the process for terminating tenured teachers who receive “ineffective” ratings.

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Science and Environment
3:21 am
Fri April 25, 2014

Insight: Gen. Honoré's New Mission -- Fighting Pollution

Lt. Gen. Russel Honoré
Credit Restore Louisiana Now

Lt. Gen. Russel Honoré gets credit for restoring order in New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. And from that, he emerged as a national hero.

Since then, he’s retired and launched headlong into the fight against pollution, gathering the troops in a Green Army.


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Capitol Access
3:00 am
Fri April 25, 2014

Tilting at Windmills: Annual Bills, Same Result

  It appeared to be “Tilting at Windmills Day” at the Capitol Thursday, with committees hearing this year’s version of bills that seem doomed to perennial failure.


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Culture
5:38 pm
Thu April 24, 2014

Growing Up, Cokie Roberts Didn't Learn Much About the Founding Mothers Either

Roughly a decade ago, NPR news analyst Cokie Roberts authored a best-selling book about the women who were behind, and in some cases alongside, the Founding Fathers.

There’s a new illustrated version, for kids, called, Founding Mothers: Remembering the Ladies.


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Capitol Access
3:00 am
Thu April 24, 2014

Attempt to Put Medicaid Expansion on the Ballot Fails

Supporters of Medicaid expansion gather on the state capitol steps. April 23, 2014.
Credit Amy Jeffries / WRKF

At the conclusion of nearly five hours of emotional testimony, Senate Health and Welfare Committee Chairman David Heitmeier read the names of those weighing in on Senator Ben Nevers’ bill. The proposal would have put a constitutional amendment to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act before voters in Louisiana.

“You’ve got a lot of support here, Sen. Nevers," Heitmeier said.

But Nevers didn’t have the support of the committee. His bill was stopped on a 6 to 2 vote that fell along party lines.


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