A House-backed bill to raise the minimum GPA requirement to receive the TOPS scholarship will be heard in the Senate education committee today. Emelie Gunn reports…:
A Senate committee defers two bills seeking to protect confederate monuments after 5 hours of emotional testimony. Halen Doughty has more…
A proposal to increase the state’s gasoline tax died without a vote. Jeff Palermo has more…
The state Department of Insurance is reminding policyholders to make sure they are fully covered as the hurricane season begins today. Commissioner Jim Donelon says this is a time to go over all policies, especially property insurance. He says know what your coverages are and what is not covered.
Most hurricane deductibles typically run two to five percent of the insured property value. Donelon also advises homeowners to prepare to file a claim.
Donelon says every corner of the state has experienced flooding events in the last 18 months, so now is the time to purchase flood insurance, if you don’t have it already. He says there is no time to wait when it comes to getting your home covered by flood insurance.
A bill to raise the minimum GPA requirement to receive the TOPS scholarship will be heard in Senate education today. Currently, students have to earn a minimum of 2.5 GPA on their high school core curriculum to qualify. State Representative Franklin Foil’s bill would raise that to 2.75 for students who start in the 9th grade this fall. He says the program needs to be tightened up…:
Foil says nobody wants to see any student excluded from receiving the award…:
The measure could be in trouble in the Senate which has already approved a proposal to create a task force that studies the impacts of changing the program in any way. Foil believes the bill has a good chance of making it through the process…:
After five hours of heated debate, a Senate committee rejected two proposals aimed at protecting confederate monuments. One measure would require a public vote to remove military monuments, while the other requires legislative approval. There was steep opposition from black lawmakers, including Senator Troy Carter, who notes there are no statues celebrating Adolph Hitler.
One woman was so passionate she drove from Florida to make her case. Jenna Burnstein gave an emotional testimony, pleading with lawmakers to protect memorials to those who fought in the Civil War. She adds it’s not fair to compare Civil War generals to Hitler.
Burnstein went back and forth with the committee chairwoman, New Orleans Senator Karen Peterson. Burnstein pointed out that people of other races were also enslaved and that some blacks even owned slaves. She became emotional at the thought of more monuments coming down.
Peterson says men who fought to enslave people should not be revered in public space. She says they should not be celebrated as Americans because they were from the Confederate States of America. She reminded supporters of the measure that the Civil War ended centuries ago.
Both measures were deferred with a 4-2 vote.
A proposed gas tax hike was killed without a vote on the House floor, but there was still ample discussion about the attempt to raise millions of dollars to improve roads. State Representative Steve Carter expressed his frustration with his own party, who actively fought the legislation. He also criticized an out of state anti-tax group Americans for Prosperity, who lobbied against it.
Carter says he didn’t bring the bill up for a vote, because the 70 voted needed were not there. Haughton Representative Dodie Horton says she speaks on behalf of her constituents. She says they don’t trust that the money would go towards transportation infrastructure, and they don’t want a gas tax increase.
Shreveport Representative Alan Seabaugh also opposed the increase. He says he was lobbied on this bill by a lot by members of his own party, but the people who elected him asked him to vote against it. He says he won’t turn his back on his constituents.
Carter says we need to find a way to fix the state’s decrepit roadways, and we need to do it soon. Monroe Representative Katrina Jackson says even business leaders in her community backed the proposal. She hopes this discussion is not over yet.
LSU is considered a huge favorite to beat Texas Southern on Friday in the opening game of the Baton Rouge Regional. Tiger Rag Associate Editor James Moran says the SWAC champs are not very strong on the mound…
Moran says third-seeded Rice has a very good reliever in Glenn Otto, who has struck out 78 in 56.2 innings. But he says the Owls might not have enough starting pitching….
Southeastern Louisiana is the 2nd seed. It’s the highest seed the Lions have ever had in program history. Moran says S-L-U will not be an easy out in this regional…