State

Rep. Cameron Henry, R-Metairie, presents the budget bill during the House’s meeting Monday. Credit: Sarah Gamard

House passes GOP budget funding TOPS, cutting money for health

House passes GOP budget funding TOPS, cutting money for health
By William Taylor Potter and Matt Houston
Manship School
News Service
BATON ROUGE – The GOP budget – that called for full TOPS funding and a $235 million cut from the Department of Health’s funding – passed the House relatively unscathed following five hours of debate Thursday, the only action at the Statehouse.

Bill to protect campus free speech advances

A House Education Committee recommended to the full House on Tuesday a bill that would protect free expression on college campuses by requiring the establishment of an official university policy affirming free expression and quashing barriers to free speech.
House Bill 269 by Rep. Lance Harris, R-Alexandria, is modeled after policies at Yale and University of Chicago and legislation recently enacted in Arizona.

Movie exemptions may be revised

A set of bills aiming to change entertainment industry tax exemptions and the way the state implements its oft-debated motion picture tax credit program were moved to the Senate floor Monday.
Sen. JP Morrell, D-New Orleans, presented the Senate Revenue and Taxation Committee with a substitute bill to his original Senate Bill 235, proposing solutions to fatal flaws he said ruined the motion picture tax credit program.

House Insurance Committee Chairman Kirk Talbot, R-River Ridge, left, who sponsored House Bill 435 that would require hospitals to disclose which medical providers are not in a patient’s insurance network, briefly confers with Rep. Major Thibaut, D-New Roads, right, Tuesday. (Photo by Tryfon Boukouvidis)

Bill: Hospitals inform patients about out-of-network services

The House Insurance Committee Tuesday amended and recommended to the full chamber a bill that would require hospitals to disclose which medical providers are not in a patient’s insurance network prior to scheduled non-emergency services.
House Bill 435 by Kirk Talbot, R-River Ridge, proposes that hospitals provide the patients with a list of the medical providers associated with the hospitals. Currently, health care facilities provide a list of out-of-network physicians only upon request.

Constitutional convention sought to fix ‘broken system’

Louisiana will be on its way to its next constitutional convention to adjust the Louisiana Constitution where it deals with fiscal matters if a bill approved in the House Governmental Affairs Committee Tuesday makes it through the House and Senate.
“We can all agree on one thing: The current system is broken. Regardless of what the fix is, we all agree that we need to fix it,” Rep. Neil Abramson, D-New Orleans, said. “This provides a mechanism to do it.”

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