Sen. Karen Carter Peterson, D-New Orleans, addresses Rep. Thomas Carmody, R-Shreveport, and Sen. Beth Mizell, R-Franklinton (on screen), about their bills that would make it harder to remove Confederate monuments. (Photo by Manship School News Service)

Confederate military monument legiislation defeated

XFollowing nearly six hours of testimony and six minutes of vote discussion, the Senate Committee on Senate and Governmental Affairs Wednesday killed on identical 4-2 votes, a pair of bills Wednesday that would have made it more difficult to remove Confederate military monuments in Louisiana.

Tax reform appears DOA

One of the last major tax reform packages of the session, one that overhauls the state’s tax code, likely is dead in the House after a core piece of Baton Rouge Republican Barry Ivey’s legislation was shot down Tuesday evening.
House Bill 360 , which needed the two-thirds approval for revenue measures, fell short, 58-31 vote. The bill proposed a flat corporate tax rate of 6.5 percent and removed the deductibility of federal income taxes from corporate tax filings in state.

Minimum wage increase fails

The Senate Finance Committee, buttressed by challenged warnings that any mandated increase would cost jobs, killed, 7-3, a bill that would have raised the state’s minimum wage from the federal minimum of $7.25 to $8 in 2018, and to $8.50 in 2019.
Washington, D.C. and 28 other states have a minimum wager higher than the federal minimum of $7.25. Only three have a lower employment rate than Louisiana, according to Louisiana Budget Project Director Jan Moller. States must at least match the federal minimum.

House Appropriations chairman Cameron Henry, R-Metairie, listens to testimony on Rep. Franklin Foil’s TOPS funding bill Tuesday, while Rep. John Berthelot, R-Gonzales, and Rep. Steve Pylant, R-Winnsboro, confer on a point. Foil chose to defer House Bill 91 to find a better alternative to fund the popular scholarship program. (Photo by Sarah Gamard\/ Manship School News Service)

Legislative wrapup

TOPS funding bill deferred
By Katie Gagliano
Manship School News Service
BATON ROUGE — A measure to ensure consistent funding for the TOPS scholarship program was voluntarily deferred in a House Appropriations Committee Tuesday over concerns about diverting monies from the state’s general fund, thus hurting other unnamed entities.


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