LaPolitics by Maginnis: Legislators press for hospital answers
Despite upbeat assurances from administration officials that drastic budget cuts to the public hospital system can be managed, legislators remain uneasy about the plans for and the future of facilities in their districts. Responding to cuts made to close an anticipated $859 million shortfall, caused by congressional action last month, DHH Secretary Bruce Greenstein says the current model for LSU Hospitals is not sustainable and that more public-private partnerships are needed to care for Medicaid and uninsured populations. While Greenstein cited the developing public-private partnership between LSU and Our Lady of the Lake in Baton Rouge as a future model, Rep. Pat Smith, D-Baton Rouge, shot back, "All you are doing is starving the LSU system to force a change."
—Doug Moreau has to decide if he will be playing political football himself this fall, or broadcasting on the real thing. With less than a month to go before qualifying opens for the Supreme Court race in the Baton Rouge area, the field remains fluid, awaiting decisions from Moreau and from leading business group LABI, with an expected winnowing of candidates to follow. Moreau's decision to run or not to run could in turn determine whether two other Republican district judges qualify: Bill Morvant of Baton Rouge and Guy Holdridge of Gonzales. Combined with LABI's endorsement, several political sources say only one of the three will run. The LABI PAC has interviewed them, in addition to three appellate judges: Toni Higginbotham, Jeff Hughes and John Michael Guidry, who is the lone Democrat and has the longest service on the Court of Appeal. But the field might expand before it contracts. District Judge Tim Kelley, who initially leaned against running, will interview with LABI next week.
They said it: "I think Drew Brees will sign a contract before [Ray] Nagin gets indicted, but both are certainties in my opinion." —Attorney Chip Foret in early July, in The Times-Picayune
(John Maginnis publishes LaPolitics Weekly, a newsletter on Louisiana politics, at LaPolitics.com.)
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