Criminal justice bills derailed by Louisiana budget feud
BATON ROUGE - Lawmakers have temporarily shelved key pieces of Louisiana's planned criminal justice overhaul after they say Republicans threatened to trounce the proposals because Democrats are holding up an unrelated financing bill.
The House was expected to vote Thursday on four bills stemming from a task force's recommendations to decrease the state's highest-in-the-nation incarceration rate and save millions annually.
All four bills, however, were postponed.
The measures include Rep. Walt Leger's proposal to reinvest 70 percent of the expected savings into efforts to decrease recidivism.
Leger says Republicans are upset with Democrats for holding up a measure that pays for state-financed construction projects. Leger believes the bills would have passed Thursday, but the debate would have been contentious. The bills are rescheduled for Tuesday.