5:30 LRN Newscast May 30

The Gator Scholarship Program, an expanded use of the school voucher program received final passage in the Senate Thursday. Council for a Better Louisiana President Barry Erwin says while passage is a win for the governor, a watered-down version of the original bill is what he’ll have the opportunity to sign.

Cut 10 (12) “…a bit.”

Erwin says the Education Savings Account bill still offers opportunities for families to use tax dollars to pay for private school, but the program will be phased in slower than originally intended.

Cut 11 (11) “…long runway.”

In the final version of the legislation, Erwin says the amount of money each family could potentially receive remains to be determined. BESE will oversee the program.

A bill headed to the Governor’s desk will eliminate the requirement to give 16- and 17-year-old employees at least a 20-minute break when they work at least five hours. Denham Springs Representative Roger Wilder says this legislation is less red tape for employers hiring minors which makes the hiring process more productive.

PM Cut 4 (13) “…with paperwork.” 

With the session scheduled to wrap up on Monday, there are several bills still trying to make it across the finish line. And one is to eliminate the 30-year statute of limitations where one can be prosecuted for child molestation. Representative Tim Kerner hopes the bill, which passed unanimously in the House, will reach the governor’s desk.

Cut 24  (09) “…out there (x2).”

The Senate is expected to take up the state budget Friday and the session must end by 6pm Monday June 3rd.