AM LRN Newscall May 20

Business groups are calling on Governor Edwards to stop enhanced unemployment benefits so more people will reenter the workforce. Brooke Thorington has more.

Cut 1 (31) “…I’m Brooke Thorington”


Governor Edwards says he used to be staunchly against legalizing recreational marijuana, but like many Louisianans, his opinion is changing. Matt Doyle has the story.

Cut 2 (29) “…I’m Matt Doyle.” 


A Senate bill setting up the rules and regulations for sports betting passes in the Senate. Brooke Thorington has more.

Cut 3 (31)  “…I’m Brooke Thorington.”


Business organizations are asking Governor John Bel Edwards to stop federally enhanced unemployment benefits. Louisiana Association of Business and Industry President Stephen Waguespack says the state is very dependent on a service-based economy like hospitality, tourism, restaurants, and retail.

Cut 4 (11)“…(x2) to work..”

While neighboring states like Arkansas, Texas, and Mississippi are opting out of federally enhanced unemployment, Governor Edwards says he does not want to react too quickly.

Cut 5 (11)”…we are.”

Waguespack says the enhanced benefits are why people are not returning to the workforce and the evidence it there when you talk to employers on Main Street.

Cut 6 (10) “…call back.”

Governor Edwards says while the enhanced benefits are only temporary, the tourism industry has yet to rebound from pre-pandemic levels.

Cut 7 (09)  “…net costs.”

The current enhanced $300 unemployment benefits are scheduled to end on September 6th.


During a Congressional hearing, Senator John Kennedy questioned an official with the US Housing and Urban Development on why the Biden administration has not formulated a disaster aid package to assist 2020 hurricane victims. Kennedy says it’s been nine months since Hurricane Laura nearly flattened southwest Louisiana…

Cut 8 (08) “…get an answer?” (2x)

HUD Deputy Assistant Secretary Arthur Jemison says he sympathizes with Kennedy and HUD is ready to support the residents of Louisiana struggling to recover from the multiple hurricanes that hit the state.

Cut 9 (08) “…with every day” 

Kennedy concluded by asking if HUD would recommend providing disaster assistance and who would be the best person to speak within the white house to settle the matter.

Cut 10 (07) “…an answer”


A House committee unanimously approves a resolution calling for the formation of a committee dedicated to studying the impacts of potentially legalizing marijuana in Louisiana.

Thibodaux Representative Bryan Fontenot was one of the leading voices against legalization this year, saying this kind of study must be conducted before lawmakers can make an informed decision…

Cut 11 (07) “….those people”

The committee will be made up of legislative leaders, DAs, Sheriffs, the state medical marijuana industry, LSU and Southern Ag, and criminal justice reform advocates. The committee must report its findings no less than 14 days prior to the start of the 2022 Regular Legislative Session.

Despite widespread public support the legislation could not overcome strong opposition by the Louisiana Sheriffs’ Association, but Executive Director Mike Ranatza backs this resolution…

Cut 12 (11) “…diligence.”

17 states have legalized recreational marijuana so far.

Governor Edwards says like many Louisianans his opinion on legalization has changed over time. He says legalization is likely going to happen within the next few years, but…

Cut 13 (06) “…benefits.”

Governor Edwards made the comments on this monthly talk show Ask the Governor.


Sports betting is another step closer to becoming a reality in Louisiana. Senate President Page Cortez’s bill passed in the Senate and now heads to the House. Port Allen Senator Rick Ward says as far as he’s concerned 65-percent of voters approved the bill last fall.

Cut 14 (08) “…want to do.”

The bill creates 20 licenses for sportsbook operators with the current land-based and riverboat casinos in the state along with racetracks. Ward says the operators can also have windows and kiosks to place bets along with a website and mobile app.

Cut 15 (09)“…in place.”

If the existing casinos and racetracks do not seek all 20 licenses by January 1st then fantasy sports betting operators and video poker establishments in the 55 approved parishes where sports betting is legal can apply for a license.

Sports wagering would be overseen by the Louisiana Gaming Control Board and they would provide the rules and regulations.

Lake Charles Senator Ronnie Johns says it’s time to catch up with other states and approve the measure.

Cut 16 (12) “…legally.”

It passed on a 31-6 vote and now heads to the House.  A separate bill to levy taxes and fees on sports betting will be heard in House Ways and Means and a bill to allowing the Louisiana Lottery to conduct sports wagering awaits final passage in the Senate.


The LSU baseball team begins an important series tonight in College Station against the Texas A-and-M Aggies. The Tigers need one win in order to qualify for the SEC Tournament and the Bayou Bengals need a series victory over the Aggies to keep their NCAA Tournament hopes alive. Coach Paul Mainieri says Texas A-and-M’s best weapon on offense is Will Frizell…

Cut 17 (17) “..hard throwing guys.”

Landon Marceaux will start on the mound for the Tigers. Marceaux says if they win, they will get into the NCAA Tournament…

Cut  18 (12)”…to be.”


For the Ragin Cajuns to get in the NCAA Tournament they need to win next week’s Sun Belt Tournament. But this weekend the Cajuns have a chance at winning the Sun Belt West if they have a good weekend against Troy and U-T-A falters at Georgia Southern. Louisiana Coach Matt Deggs

Cut 19 (18) “…of the league.” 


14th ranked Louisiana Tech will conclude its regular season by hosting Conference USA rival Old Dominion tonight and tomorrow at the Love Shack. The two games will not count toward the league standings. The Monarchs are 36-14 overall, 22-and-10 in league play. Bulldogs Coach Lane Burroughs says they are a good hitting team…

Cut 20 (20) “…this weekend.”