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  • Schools remain gun-free after weapons bill pulled Play Video

    April 16, 2014 2:03 PM

    BATON ROUGE- A Chalmette lawmaker shelved his proposal to let school employees who have a concealed handgun permit to go to work armed. Rep. Ray Garofalo pulled his bill Wednesday after getting negative feedback from the House criminal justice committee. Garofalo said he wanted to send a message that violent... more »
  • Drone bill passes out of committee

    April 15, 2014 12:19 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Unmanned aircraft would be limited on private property around Louisiana, if lawmakers agree to a bill that has received the support of a Senate judiciary committee. Passage without objection Tuesday came over the opposition of the Louisiana Press Association, which said the bill by Baton Rouge Sen.... more »
  • Bill naming the Bible as Louisiana state book passes in committee

    April 10, 2014 2:31 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Lawmakers are moving ahead with a proposal to name the Bible as Louisiana's official state book, despite concerns the bill would land the Legislature in court. A House municipal committee advanced the bill Thursday with an 8-5 vote. Republican Rep. Thomas Carmody, of Shreveport, says he sponsored the... more »
  • Bill requiring mental health info before abortion passes

    April 9, 2014 2:17 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Anti-abortion lawmakers want women seeking the procedure in Louisiana to get pamphlets describing possible psychological effects, the illegality of coerced abortions and services available to human trafficking victims. The House Health and Welfare Committee backed a bill that would require clinics to provide that information to women at... more »
  • Bill easing marijuana penalties derailed

    April 3, 2014 2:39 PM

    BATON ROUGE- A New Orleans lawmaker's proposal to soften penalties for marijuana possession has been at least temporarily derailed by opposition from Louisiana sheriffs. Rep. Austin Badon, a Democrat, pulled his bill from consideration Thursday in the House Criminal Justice Committee after testimony by the head of the Louisiana Sheriffs... more »
  • Bill allowing concealed guns in restaurants advances

    April 2, 2014 2:38 PM

    BATON ROUGE - A bill allowing concealed handgun permit holders and off-duty police officers to come armed to restaurants serving alcohol has the backing of the House Criminal Justice Committee. The committee voted 9-4 to advance the bill Wednesday. Metairie Rep. Joe Lopinto says he sponsored the measure to clear... more »
  • La. senator says bill would shut down "chicken boxing"

    April 1, 2014 2:46 PM

    BATON ROUGE- A New Orleans senator described his bill as closing loopholes in Louisiana's cockfighting ban. An Opelousas senator said it would shut down the sport of "chicken boxing." The criticism stunned Sen. J.P. Morrell, who was proposing the bill. Sen. Elbert Guillory, who represents an area that fought... more »
  • Jobless benefits bill clears first Senate hurdle

    March 27, 2014 2:54 PM

    WASHINGTON- Long-delayed legislation to restore benefits for the long-term unemployed has cleared an initial Senate hurdle. The 65-34 Thursday vote came as the White House issued a statement of support. The measure would restore benefits for five months, back to when they expired Dec. 28. The program generally helps workers... more »
  • Bill approved to overhaul school textbook review process

    March 12, 2014 2:41 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Lawmakers are considering an overhaul to Louisiana's process for reviewing textbooks to give school districts more freedom to decide which instructional materials they want to use. The Senate Education Committee agreed Wednesday without objection to the proposal. Sen. Conrad Appel, the committee's chairman, says he's trying to address... more »
  • Lawmaker: Hang up the phone while driving Play Video

    March 7, 2014 10:18 PM

    BATON ROUGE - There's another attempt to ban cell phones in the upcoming legislative session. Rep. Mike Huval has prefiled a bill that would prohibit the use of cell phones by all "Class E" drivers, or drivers who have a personal vehicle, with the exception of a hands-free device.... more »
  • Red light cameras could require voter approval Play Video

    March 5, 2014 9:40 PM

    BATON ROUGE - A state representative wants to bring red light cameras to a public vote. Rep. Jeff Arnold of New Orleans says this is his third attempt to require voter approval prior to the imposition of civil fines for violations captured by automated traffic enforcement systems, like red... more »
  • Hazardous haulers may need to change route Play Video

    March 4, 2014 9:52 PM

    BATON ROUGE - A pre-filed bill says hazardous haulers might need to find a new route through areas where there are large universities. The bill, by Rep. Regina Barrow would prohibit the transport of hazardous materials within a five mile radius of a university. The bill says there are... more »
  • Senator files bill for more EBR school districts

    February 28, 2014 2:09 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Mack "Bodi" White, a republican senator from Central, is reportedly pre-filing a bill to create four independent school districts in East Baton Rouge Parish. The districts would be under an "umbrella" of schools in East Baton Rouge. One of them would be the Southeast district that... more »
  • Battle shaping up over 'Big Oil' lawsuit bill

    February 27, 2014 12:03 PM

    NEW ORLEANS - Backers of a lawsuit against oil and gas companies in Louisiana are planning to fight legislation that changes how flood protection board members are chosen. The Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-East filed the suit over the erosion of coastal wetlands, blaming the oil and gas industry.... more »
  • Obama signs debt ceiling measure into law

    February 15, 2014 5:47 PM

    RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. - President Barack Obama has signed separate measures lifting the federal debt limit and restoring full cost of living benefits for military retirees. Obama signed the bills into law Saturday during a weekend golf vacation in Southern California. The debt limit measure frees the government to borrow... more »
  • Utility bills rise after cold snap Play Video

    February 13, 2014 6:05 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Utility bills after a cold snap in Louisiana are up about 20 percent from this time last year. Entergy said their customer energy usage is up 14 percent for December and 17 percent for January, which is about $20 more for a 1,000 kWht user. DEMCO... more »
  • Senate passes bill to delay flood insurance hikes

    January 30, 2014 2:06 PM

    WASHINGTON- The Senate has passed a bill to delay premium hikes for years on hundreds of thousands of homeowners who buy flood insurance from the federal government. The 67-32 vote reflects widespread concern about changes enacted two years ago to shore up the program's finances. The changes are producing... more »
  • Lawmaker pushes for required gun class Play Video

    January 16, 2014 10:25 PM

    BATON ROUGE - At least one state lawmaker wants people who purchase guns to show proof that they have attended some sort of safety class before bringing the firearm home. Rep. Austin Badon of New Orleans pre-filed HB 13. The courses could include a concealed carry course, LDWF... more »
  • Sticking to your New Year's resolutions Play Video

    January 2, 2014 4:46 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Medical wellness director Bill Gvoich talked about why New Year's resolution don't work out most of the time today on WBRZ News 2 at 4. Gvoich said the most important thing is not to "bite off more than you can chew." He said clean eating will... more »
  • Help with heating costs this winter Play Video

    November 13, 2013 5:01 PM

    BATON ROUGE - When Entergy and DEMCO users add donations onto their bills, the money goes to struggling bill payers in their area. Entergy just gave the East Baton Rouge Council on Aging $33,000 to help low income elderly or disabled Entergy users. Each customer is limited on the... more »
  • Senate nears historic vote on gay rights bill

    November 7, 2013 7:58 AM

    WASHINGTON - The Senate is pushing toward a historic vote on legislation outlawing workplace discrimination against gay, bisexual and transgender Americans. All 55 members of the Democratic majority and several Republicans are expected to unite Thursday in backing the Employment Non-Discrimination Act. Senate passage would be a major... more »
  • Senate rejects House conditions on spending bill

    September 30, 2013 1:50 PM

    WASHINGTON- The Democratic-led Senate has rejected conditions that House Republicans attached to a temporary spending bill. On the brink of a government shutdown, the Senate voted 54-46 on Monday to strip a one-year delay in President Barack Obama's health care law from the bill that would keep the government operating.... more »
  • Congress approves bill to avert helium shortage

    September 26, 2013 2:58 PM

    WASHINGTON- Congress has moved to avert an impending shutdown of the federal helium reserve, a key supplier of the lighter-than-air gas used in a products ranging from party balloons to MRI machines. The Federal Helium Program, which provides about 42 percent of the nation's helium from a storage site in... more »
  • Ascension sewer rates could see hike Play Video

    August 29, 2013 5:32 PM

    GONZALES - People in Ascension Parish who are a part of the parish sewage system could see a hike in their monthly bill. The parish operates five sewer treatment plants and about 500 people pay $30 a month to be a part of it. $400,000 dollars comes out of... more »
  • Taxpayer dollars paying for free rides out of town for homeless Play Video

    August 2, 2013 10:46 PM

    BATON ROUGE - One city is footing the bill for its homeless to take one way trips to places like Los Angeles and Tulsa. The Way Home program started through private funding and gave 75 vagrants tickets out of town. But recently, Baton Rouge Metro Council gave the... more »
  • House OKs 40th effort to repeal health law

    August 2, 2013 11:33 AM

    WASHINGTON - Republicans have pushed legislation through the House preventing the Internal Revenue Service from implementing any part of President Barack Obama's health care overhaul. It's the 40th time the chamber has voted to repeal all or part of the 2010 law. The bill is sure to be ignored by... more »
  • House approves lower rates on student loans

    July 31, 2013 5:33 PM

    WASHINGTON - A bill that would lower the cost of student loans has passed the House and is heading to President Barack Obama for his signature. The House on Wednesday gave final congressional approval to a bipartisan measure that links student loan interest rates to the financial markets. Most students... more »
  • National Guard to pay for Krotz Springs barriers

    July 30, 2013 10:17 AM

    KROTZ SPRINGS - St. Landry Parish President Bill Fontenot says the Louisiana National Guard will foot the $136,000 bill for flood barriers a Krotz Springs man floated for two years. Fontenot said his office, Krotz Springs Mayor Carroll Snyder and Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness Director Kevin... more »
  • Perry says Texas abortion bill constitutional

    July 13, 2013 5:17 PM

    WEST, Texas - Gov. Rick Perry says the abortion bill awaiting his signature to become Texas law is constitutional and will withstand court challenges by those who oppose it. Perry told reporters Saturday, hours after the bill passed, that "we wouldn't have passed it if we didn't think it was... more »
  • Texas Senate convenes to debate abortion bill

    July 12, 2013 2:20 PM

    AUSTIN, Texas - The Texas Senate has convened to begin debate and ultimately vote on a bill to implement some of the nation's toughest abortion restrictions. Demonstrators on either side of the issue filled the Senate chamber Friday afternoon, with state police lining the gallery to stop anyone from disrupting... more »
  • McCain, Schumer express optimism on immigration

    July 11, 2013 10:31 AM

    WASHINGTON - Two senators who played a big role in an immigration overhaul in Congress say they're encouraged legislation will move forward despite resistance from the Republican-controlled House. Sen. Chuck Schumer says it seems that a "large percentage" of the House realizes that doing nothing on immigration is not an... more »
  • Texas House passes abortion bill; Senate next stop

    July 10, 2013 11:24 AM

    AUSTIN, Texas - The Texas House has approved new abortion limits in a second special session, less than two weeks after Senate Republicans failed to finish work on the bill amid a filibuster and raucous protests. A final vote could be held as early as Friday in the Senate, where... more »
  • Senate passes immigration bill

    June 27, 2013 3:32 PM

    WASHINGTON - The Senate has passed historic immigration legislation offering the hope of American citizenship to millions, while promising a military-style surge to secure the border. The vote was 68-32, far more than the majority needed to send the measure to the House. Prospects there are not nearly as good... more »
  • Texas gov. calls 2nd special session on abortion

    June 26, 2013 4:20 PM

    AUSTIN, Texas - Gov. Rick Perry is calling for the Texas Legislature to meet in a second special session to pass restrictions on abortion. The first such effort died following a filibuster and rollicking late Tuesday night protest. The announcement gives Republicans another crack at passing sweeping anti-abortion rules that... more »
  • "People's filibuster" stops Texas abortion measure

    June 26, 2013 7:38 AM

    AUSTIN, Texas - It's being called the "people's filibuster" at the Texas State Capitol. Demonstrators against tough restrictions on abortions in the state shouted at deafening levels in the Senate chamber late last night, preventing lawmakers from voting on those restrictions before the midnight deadline. They created a ruckus... more »
  • Jindal signs equal pay bill for state workers

    June 19, 2013 6:20 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Gov. Bobby Jindal has agreed that state agencies should be banned from paying unequal wages to employees of different genders for the same job. Jindal signed the Equal Pay for Women Act into law Wednesday. The bill by New Orleans Sen. Ed Murray doesn't affect private companies.... more »
  • Jindal signs bill allowing donations of fish, game

    June 18, 2013 6:15 PM

    SHREVEPORT - There shouldn't be any hang-ups if hunters and fishermen want to donate their catch to nonprofits that feed the hungry. Gov. Bobby Jindal on Tuesday signed a bill by Keithville Sen. Sherri Buffington that allows for the donations. The legislation came after state health inspectors destroyed 1,600 pounds... more »
  • Report says immigration bill cuts deficit

    June 18, 2013 4:36 PM

    WASHINGTON - The Congressional Budget Office says a sweeping immigration bill before the Senate would cut deficits by $197 billion over 10 years. The bill would add $262 billion in new spending and tax credits over 10 years, a sum more than covered by $459 billion in increased revenues, according... more »
  • Senate leader won't weaken gun background checks

    June 13, 2013 1:37 PM

    WASHINGTON - Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says he won't accept watered-down background checks as the price for pushing gun control legislation through the Senate. The Nevada Democrat isn't getting into specifics. But gun control advocates have worried that if Democrats are trying to declare victory on the issue, they... more »
  • Boehner: Congress can do immigration this year

    June 11, 2013 8:51 AM

    WASHINGTON - House Speaker John Boehner says he thinks there's a good chance that legislation overhauling America's immigration system can be signed into law "by the end of the year." The Ohio Republican gives his assessment hours before the Senate casts its first votes on a landmark bill that... more »
  • Jindal seeks regulatory change, after bill fails

    June 9, 2013 10:13 AM

    BATON ROUGE, La. - Gov. Bobby Jindal's attempt to restructure early childhood education hit a roadblock in the Legislature. Unrelated disputes between the House and Senate stalled the bill that would have directly tied public dollars to student performance. Now, the Jindal administration is looking to make regulatory changes to... more »
  • "Fiscal hawks" attach measures to budget

    June 6, 2013 3:18 PM

    BATON ROUGE -"Fiscal hawk" lawmakers slowed passage of the state budget today to make sure their fiscal reform bills get signed, lawmakers told News 2. Earlier today, House members in the budget conference committee for HB 1 rejected Senate amendments, sending it back to the chambers. Rep. Brett... more »
  • Lawmakers pass bill protecting ID of gun owners

    June 6, 2013 1:39 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Journalists, bloggers or anyone else will be prohibited from publicly identifying applicants for concealed handgun permits in Louisiana. A bill that will make it a misdemeanor crime to release the information received final passage Thursday and heads to Gov. Bobby Jindal's desk. The House approved the measure... more »
  • Senate defeats Republican student loan plan

    June 6, 2013 10:17 AM

    WASHINGTON - The Democratic-controlled Senate has voted down a Republican proposal to link student loan interest rates to the financial markets. The Senate on Thursday was scheduled to next take up Democrats' proposal that would extend current interest rates on new subsidized Stafford loans for the next two years at... more »
  • Bills regulating salt domes clear La. Legislature

    June 5, 2013 4:02 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Three bills crafted in response to a 15-acre sinkhole in Assumption Parish and an on-going evacuation order for 350 residents are headed to Gov. Bobby Jindal's desk. Sponsors of the measures say they are intended to help prevent similar occurrences by requiring stricter guidelines for monitoring and... more »
  • Bill for breakaway school district pulled

    June 5, 2013 1:27 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Senator Bodi White announced today he was pulling his bill to create a breakaway school district in southeast Baton Rouge. White said at a noon press conference he did not have the 70 votes required for the constitutional amendment to pass. The bill was pulled... more »
  • Announcement today on breakaway school district

    June 5, 2013 10:59 AM

    BATON ROUGE - The lawmaker leading the charge for a breakaway school district in southeast Baton Rouge scheduled an announcement today regarding the troubled legislation. Senator Bodi White, R-Baton Rouge, scheduled the press conference for noon today, the day before the regular legislative session is scheduled to end. ... more »
  • Charges could be filed against people who haven't paid bills Play Video

    June 4, 2013 10:27 PM

    SORRENTO - Delinquent water, sewer and trash customers in Sorrento could go to jail if they don't pay what they owe. It's the plan from the city council after discovering more than $11,000 in back bills where the people were still receiving services. It's an issue WBRZ News... more »
  • Bills preempting federal gun laws stall in Senate

    June 4, 2013 4:38 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Two far-reaching and controversial House-approved bills that sought to prohibit federal oversight of gun laws in Louisiana have stalled in the Louisiana Senate and won't become law. Promoted as state's rights measures against an increasingly intrusive federal government, the proposals were easily approved in the House despite... more »
  • Senate gives final passage to equal pay bill

    June 4, 2013 2:07 PM

    BATON ROUGE - The Senate has gave final passage to a bill that prohibits employers from paying unequal wages based on gender to state employees for the same job within the same agency. The bill, which doesn't include private companies, heads to Gov. Bobby Jindal for consideration. New Orleans Sen.... more »
  • House rejects budget changes with two days to go

    June 4, 2013 10:51 AM

    BATON ROUGE - The state House unanimously rejected the Senate's changes to the $25 billion state budget bill today as the regular session winds down. The House voted 98-0 to send House Bill 1 to a conference committee. They also appointed six House members to work out a compromise... more »
  • Fiscal hawk budget bills hit roadblocks in Senate

    May 30, 2013 4:31 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Senators had a mixed reaction to proposals by conservative House lawmakers seeking to rewrite laws for how Louisiana estimates and spends its money. The Senate Finance Committee refused Thursday to insert the ideas into the state constitution and limited the remaining proposals to two-year pilot programs. The... more »
  • More people pay up after News 2 investigation

    May 29, 2013 10:14 PM

    SORRENTO- More people have paid overdue utility payments since a WBRZ News 2 investigation into why people were not paying, yet still receiving services such as water and trash collection. Around $1,000 has been collected in a week but somewhere around $10,000 is still owed. A town council... more »
  • House to take up abortion legislation

    May 29, 2013 10:43 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Planned Parenthood and abortions are again in the spotlight at the Capitol, where a pair of measures are scheduled to be brought up today. The House Health and Welfare Committee passed Senate Concurrent Resolution 57 this morning, which calls on the state to scrutinize Planned Parenthood... more »
  • House rejects change in concealed permit ID bill

    May 28, 2013 5:09 PM

    BATON ROUGE - The final version of a bill to make it a criminal act for journalists, bloggers or anyone else to publish or release the names or addresses of applicants for concealed handgun permits will be worked out in a legislative compromise committee. The House on Tuesday refused to... more »
  • People pay delinquent city bills after News 2 investigation

    May 24, 2013 10:20 PM

    SORRENTO- Leaders said a number of people showed-up at city hall to pay delinquent water, sewer, trash, and other city costs after a WBRZ News 2 investigation Thursday night. The story found people were not paying and services were not being disconnected, costing the city thousands of dollars. ... more »
  • Thousands owed to City of Sorrento Play Video

    May 23, 2013 9:30 PM

    SORRENTO - Several dozen people owe thousands of dollars to the City of Sorrento for city services like water, trash, sewer and even for the demolition of condemned properties. Some of the bills add up to more than $1,000. "We are operating a lot in the red," said Councilman... more »
  • Efforts to end sugar program fail in Congress

    May 23, 2013 11:32 AM

    WASHINGTON D.C. - Louisiana's $3.5 billion sugarcane and sugar mill industries could breathe a sigh of relief after an effort to effectively end the federal sugar program was defeated on the Senate floor. The nearly $1 trillion Senate farm bill being debated this week keeps the federal sugar program intact... more »
  • New state law would clear confusion around surrogacy births

    May 22, 2013 10:41 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Lawmakers are poised to streamline laws dealing with surrogacy births in Louisiana. Some have suggested surrogacy births are currently taking place without clear guidelines on the legal rights of the parents, the surrogate or the child. The topic was of the focus of a News 2 report... more »
  • House overwhelmingly refuses to expand Medicaid

    May 21, 2013 6:24 PM

    BATON ROUGE - The Louisiana House has rejected an attempt to provide government-subsidized health insurance to thousands of people with the Medicaid dollars available under the federal Affordable Care Act. The 59-37 vote against the Medicaid expansion proposal appeared to kill the issue for the legislative session. The Senate's budget... more »
  • No helmets required for Elio vehicle occupants

    May 21, 2013 5:48 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Drivers of the Elio, a three-wheeled vehicle to be manufactured in Shreveport, won't have to wear helmets. The Louisiana House gave final passage to the bill by Shreveport Rep. Barbara Norton with a 90-1 vote Tuesday, sending it to the governor's desk. Because the Elio has three... more »
  • House passes bill on lying about military medals

    May 20, 2013 6:37 PM

    WASHINGTON - The House has passed a bill making it a crime for people to falsely claim they have received a military medal in order to obtain money or government benefits. Under the legislation, which passed overwhelmingly and now goes to the Senate, offenders could face up to a year... more »
  • Toughened school safety bill wins final passage

    May 16, 2013 1:11 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Public schools, already required to have written crisis management plans, will now have to coordinate those plans with local law enforcement and emergency preparedness officials - and hold annual safety drills to rehearse them. The bill rewriting Louisiana's school safety law received final passage Thursday with a... more »
  • Community college construction bill nears passage

    May 14, 2013 1:19 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Louisiana higher education leaders are at odds over a proposal to let the community college system tap into construction dollars outside of the traditional budget process. The community colleges are winning the legislative battle so far. A bill allowing the community college system to sidestep the regular... more »
  • House lawmakers shelve Citizens rate review bill

    May 14, 2013 12:44 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Lawmakers in the House have rejected a proposal seeking legislative review of large rate hikes for customers of Louisiana's property insurer of last resort. The House Insurance Committee scrapped the idea Tuesday in a 9-4 vote against the bill by St. Mary Parish Sen. Bret Allain. The... more »
  • Breakaway school district bill before committee

    May 14, 2013 10:45 AM

    BATON ROUGE - Supporters of a breakaway school district in southeast Baton Rouge gathered at the Capitol today for a committee hearing over the bills to create it. The House Education Committee scheduled a hearing for the two bills this morning. Both were approved in the Senate last week.... more »
  • Law seeks clarity for surrogate contracts, rights Play Video

    May 13, 2013 6:45 PM

    BATON ROUGE - Surrogacy, an intense and challenging process, is currently up for debate in the Louisiana Legislature. Senate Bill 162 would make clear contracts for gestational surrogacy, which is when another woman carries and delivers a baby after being impregnated by a previously created embryo. The surrogate... more »
  • Coalition on immigration bill clears first tests

    May 9, 2013 4:04 PM

    WASHINGTON - The bipartisan group of senators supporting a plan to overhaul immigration laws has been sticking together today, amid a critical series of early test votes. The coalition turned back challenges from conservative critics as the Senate Judiciary Committee worked to refine the legislation. It would secure the nation's... more »
  • House committee approves fee increase bill for LSU

    May 8, 2013 2:10 PM

    BATON ROUGE- LSU students could see a $60 a year fee increase this fall, thanks to an approval from the House Education Committee. That fee could top out at $300 a year by the fall of 2017. Baton Rouge Rep. Franklin Foil, sponsor of the fee bill, said the money... more »
  • Some hospital bills vastly higher for similar care Play Video

    May 8, 2013 12:39 PM

    WASHINGTON - The government is shedding light on the mystery of just how high a hospital bill might go - and whether it's cheaper to get that care across town. The Department of Health and Human Services on Wednesday listed thousands of hospitals' charges for 100 common Medicare services. There... more »
  • Senators back bill blocking federal gun regulation

    May 7, 2013 2:11 PM

    BATON ROUGE- It took a Senate panel less than five minutes to approve a bill prohibiting the enforcement of federal laws in Louisiana regarding ownership of semi-automatic weapons. The Senate judiciary committee took a bit longer to approve a separate bill that would criminalize the release and publication of names... more »
  • Decimal error means customers charged 10x more

    May 6, 2013 5:47 PM

    BATON ROUGE- ATMOS customers who are enrolled in automatic drafts or bill pay may have noticed extremely high bills recently. A company spokesperson said a vendor, hired to collect monthly bills from customers, accidentally misplaced a decimal and drafted up to ten times more than what should have been... more »
  • Bill to reduce film tax credits pulled

    May 6, 2013 12:52 PM

    BATON ROUGE - The author of a bill which sought to cut lucrative tax credits for film companies in half pulled the bill today before it could be discussed at a legislative committee. Rep. Ted James (D-Baton Rouge) deferred the bill without testimony, saying he wanted to discuss the... more »
  • Bill allowing colleges to set their own tuition passes in committee

    April 30, 2013 2:33 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Two bills that would take lawmakers out of setting college tuition rates has advanced in the Louisiana House. The House Education Committee approved a bill that would allow boards for the state's four public college systems to increase tuition and fee amounts under a policy that would be... more »
  • Committee backs social media privacy bill Play Video

    April 22, 2013 11:29 AM

    BATON ROUGE - A bill that would ban employers and school officials from requesting personal online login and passwords of employees or students is working its way through Louisiana legislature. State House Representative Ted James introduced the bill that passed the House Commerce Committee Monday. It will next be considered... more »
  • Bill banning so-called "tele-medicine abortions" approved

    April 17, 2013 2:24 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Anti-abortion advocates are pushing to add new restrictions for the procedure in Louisiana, banning doctors from remotely administering the abortion pill via a video hookup. A proposal barring the practice they call "telemedicine abortions" or "web cam abortions" received the backing of the Senate Health and Welfare Committee... more »
  • Senators wrap up work on immigration bill

    April 11, 2013 3:06 PM

    WASHINGTON - Four Democratic and four Republican senators have reached agreement on all the major elements of sweeping legislation to remake the nation's immigration laws, and expect to unveil the bill next week. Democratic Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois says the bill probably will be rolled out on Tuesday. After... more »
  • Gun control bill clears first hurdle in Senate

    April 11, 2013 10:42 AM

    WASHINGTON - Gun control supporters have won the first Senate showdown over restricting firearms, rejecting an effort by conservatives to derail a package of gun curbs before debate could even begin. The 68-31 vote gave an initial burst of momentum to efforts by President Barack Obama and lawmakers, mostly Democrats,... more »
  • Bill would ban social media posts while driving

    April 10, 2013 2:19 PM

    BATON ROUGE- Hold that Twitter thought. If you are driving, a proposed state law would make it illegal for you to post status updates or anything else to social media websites. The Senate transportation committee has approved a measure that would add accessing, reading and posting to social media sites,... more »
  • Debate on immigration to get under way

    April 8, 2013 7:37 AM

    WASHINGTON - Senators writing a comprehensive immigration bill hope to finish their work this week. Their plan is sure to open a raucous public debate over measures to secure the border, allow tens of thousands of foreign workers into the country and grant eventual citizenship to the estimated 11... more »
  • Obama signs bill to avoid government shutdown

    March 26, 2013 3:16 PM

    WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama has signed a stopgap spending bill to keep the government running through the end of September. The measure leaves in place $85 billion in automatic budget cuts known as the sequester. But it takes steps to ease the impact of the cuts to food inspection... more »
  • UConn opposing bill to regulate scholarships

    March 20, 2013 10:45 AM

    HARTFORD, Conn. - Connecticut lawmakers are considering a bill that would require the University of Connecticut to continue paying for the education of athletes who lose their scholarships due to injury, illness or even a coach's decision. The bill is now before the legislature's Higher Education committee and is modeled... more »
  • Assault weapons ban won't be in Dems' gun bill

    March 19, 2013 12:52 PM

    WASHINGTON - The Senate's top Democrat says he wants to bring a gun bill to the Senate with enough support to overcome any Republican efforts to block debate. And Harry Reid says that meant leaving out a proposed assault weapons ban. Reid says even using "the most optimistic numbers," there... more »
  • Bills call for dredging Miss. River to Baton Rouge

    March 14, 2013 4:11 PM

    NEW ORLEANS - U.S. Sen. Mary Landrieu and U.S. Rep. Cedric Richmond want the Army Corps of Engineers to dredge the Mississippi River deep enough so it can handle the huge cargo ships expected to use the Panama Canal once its expansion is completed next year. The Louisiana Democrats submitted... more »
  • Rep. Boustany introduces welfare drug testing bill Play Video

    March 13, 2013 6:46 PM

    WASHINGTON, D.C. - A Louisiana congressman introduced a bill recently which would require welfare recipients to be tested for drugs. Rep. Charles Boustany (R-LA) of Lafayette introduced the measure, likening it today to requirements by private employers to test their workers for controlled substances. Rachel Fontenot, a nurse... more »

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