LRN AM Newscall April 11

A bill to create Education Savings Accounts, to help give parents more school choice options, clears the House Education Committee. Kevin Gallagher reports…:

Cut 1 (35) “…I’m Kevin Gallagher.”


In an effort to make the drive along the Atchafalaya Basin Bridge much safer, one Senator is proposing legislation to significantly increase speeding fines. Brooke Thorington explains.

Cut 2 (32) “…I’m Brooke Thorington.” 


The second in command at State Police is on administrative leave as an internal investigation looks into why his cell phone was cleared of data as facts of the 2019 in-custody death of Ronald Greene began coming out. Kevin Gallagher has more from a special House committee looking into Greene’s death…:

Cut 3 (31) “…I’m Kevin Gallagher.” 


A package of school choice bills has cleared the House Education Committee, but must also pass muster in the top House money committee. Key among them, bills to create Education Savings Accounts (ESA’s) to help parents with funding for school options other than public school. Pelican Institute for Public Policy CEO Daniel Erspamer (ER-spay-mer) says ESAs are good policy solutions that are already benefitting thousands of families around the country…:

Cut 4 (11)  “…to that opportunity.”

But Louisiana School Superintendents Association executive director Michael Faulk says the state already has a school vouchers program, and this will mean less state funding for local school systems. He says the ESA’s won’t be everything proponents promise…:

Cut 5 (08) “…for a full year.”

The Education Savings Accounts bill, known as House Bill 33, would create the accounts, establish funding and rules for the Department of Education to oversee accountability. Erspamer says the Pelican Institute is behind the idea of public education funding following the child; not the school. He says the bill would give parents – on average – an extra $5500 yearly for kids’ education choices…:

Cut 6 (13)  “…to every family.”

Approved by the House Education Committee last week, the bill also has to pass fiscal scrutiny in the House Appropriations Committee before it can get a debate on the House floor. What will it actually cost taxpayers? And can that expense fit into the budget? Faulk says those fiscal uncertainties are the problem with ESAs…:

Cut 7 (08) “…are actually gonna do it.”


Senate President Page Cortez files legislation in an effort to reduce wrecks on the 18-mile long Atchafalaya Basin Bridge. Cortez says he’s seen multiple 18-wheelers fail to drive in the righthand lane even though signs are posted and there are other vehicles weaving in and out of traffic at high speeds.

Cut 8 (03)  “…do something.”

The Lafayette Republican’s bill will increase speeding penalties to up $2,500 for those going over the legal limit and increase speed limit signage and signs for truckers to drive only in the righthand lane. Cortez says the bill includes clear signage so motorists are well aware of the price they’ll pay if they speed.

Cut 9 (08)  “…high fine.”

The speed limit on the bridge is 60 miles per hour for cars and 55 for trucks. Cortez says speeders are putting others in extreme danger along an area that’s difficult for emergency crews to respond to because it’s above water. And not to mention the frustration it creates when a crash stops traffic.

Cut 10 (10) “…being killed.”

Cortez says he’s talked with DOTD leaders about the legislation, and they suggested more cameras along with the bridge. Cortez says he’s open to any suggestions to deter drivers from speeding on the bridge.


New Orleans Democrat Karen Carter Peterson has resigned from the Louisiana Senate, ending a 23-year career in the legislature. Peterson says she needs to focus all of her energy on her struggles with depression and gambling addiction. On Thursday, she spoke about her recovery on the Senate Floor

Cut  11 (10)  “…for a long time”  

Peterson says she’s not afraid to talk about her battles with addiction in the hopes it helps someone else…

Cut 12 (10) “…with the disease.”

But on Saturday, the Advocate reported that Peterson’s abrupt resignation is because she’s under a federal investigation because of financial issues linked to her gambling. Political analyst Clancy Dubos says he’s not sure what’s Peterson’s future, but she helped raise the glass ceiling for what women can accomplish in the state politics, becoming the first woman to lead the Louisiana Democratic Party…

Cut 13 (13) “…domestic violencc”


Houma Representative Tanner Magee, who chairs a special House committee investigating the 2019 State Police custody death of Ronald Greene, says it was an appropriate decision by Colonel Lamar Davis to put L-S-P’s second in command on administrative leave.  Magee says Lt. Colonel Doug Cain should not be actively working if he’s under investigation for having his cell phone data cleared…:

Cut 14 (07)  “…all day long.”

Cain is under scrutiny for having his state-issued cellphone’s memory wiped in 2020, as facts about Greene’s death while being arrested by Troopers in Union Parish began coming to light. Magee says Cain’s appearance before the committee – wherein he refused to answer direct questions due to an internal investigation – made things look bad for State Police…:

Cut 15 (08)  “…avoid answering questions.”

Magee feels Cain and other players in the Ronald Greene story should have been under an LSP internal investigation months ago; not just recently. He says the whole thing has “been bizarre from the get-go”….:

Cut 16 (06)  “…hide the ball”


The LSU football team is halfway through spring practice and head coach Brian Kelly is still a long way from announcing a starting quarterback. Kelly says the four scholarship quarterbacks on the roster can play at LSU, but only one can start…..

Cut 17 (20) “ …skill set is.” 

Arizona State transfer Jayden Daniels spoke with the media for the first time on Saturday since arriving in Baton Rouge. Daniels on why he left A-S-U for L-S-U…

Cut 18 (19) “ …to come.” 

Daniels and sixth-year senior Myles Brennan are battling for the starting spot next season. Daniels says it’s his goal to be Q-B 1, but if not he’ll still try and help the team win…

Cut 19 (19) _“…national championship”