Capitol Views by Maginnis: B.R. breakaway school district bill falls short
Backers of a new southeast Baton Rouge school district today fell four votes short of getting the proposal on the constitutional ballot this fall. The House vote was 66-34 on Senate Bill 299 by Sen. Bodi White, R-Denham Springs. Debate was brief, as three Baton Rouge Democrats—Reps. Ted James, Pat Smith and Regina Barrow—spoke against the measure, all citing the damage it would do to the parish school system. Two parish Republicans, Cliff Richardson and Erich Ponti, urged House members to allow people to vote on the question. After the vote, White huddled with Rep. Hunter Greene to go over the vote totals with an eye to bringing the measure up again. All 34 nay votes came from Democrats, while six Democrats voted with all 58 Republicans and two independents who supported the bill. Five Democrats did not vote. Both the Senate and House have approved the statute setting up the district, and the Senate has approved the constitutional amendment. Read the full column here for additional coverage on a bill that was killed today that would have required welfare recipients to take drug tests.
(John Maginnis will publish a daily update throughout the legislative session on Daily Report PM. The report is also available to LaPolitics Weekly subscribers on the Subscribers Only page at LaPolitics.com. Registration is available on the homepage.)
Louisiana Public Broadcasting is providing a daily video update featuring highlights of the session, which you can see beginning at 6 p.m. here.
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