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.

House decides schools rule on corporal punishment

Louisiana lawmakers in the House determined Monday that local schools, not the state, should decide whether to spank or subject students to other forms of physical punishment.
They rejected Monday 34-61 House Bill 497 by Rep. Barbara Norton, D-Shreveport, which would have prohibited corporal punishment in public elementary and secondary schools.
Currently, state law allows individual school boards to make the corporal punishment decision for their schools.

Sen. Ronnie Johns, R-Lake Charles, pushed his Senate Bill 144 Tuesday with major amendments through the Senate Judiciary Committee Tuesday. The bill originally sought to restrict the age of dancers in Louisiana clubs to 21 and up, but amended version reverts back to require a minimum age of 18. (Photo by Sarah Gamard/ Manship School News Service)

Stripper age minimum stays 18

Sen. Ronnie Johns, R-Lake Charles, moved his Senate Bill 144, through the Senate Judiciary Committee Tuesday aims to protect young women from human trafficking by prohibiting strippers under the age of 18, three years younger than what he wanted.
The tweaks, authored by Sen. J.P. Morrell, D-New Orleans, amended the original bill’s most significant premise: raising the minimum age of dancers at strip clubs and similar venues to 21. Morrell’s amendment, which was supported by every committee member but Johns, took the age back to the original 18-and-up.


Eunice Today

465 Aymond St.
Eunice, LA 70535
Phone: 337-457-3061
Fax: 337-457-3122