Louisiana House of Representatives Communications Office 2014 Regular Session Week Seven, April 25, 2014

At adjournment on Thursday, April 24, the 27 legislative day of the session, 1,267 House bills and 670 Senate bills had been introduced. The House has passed 474 House bills, four which have been sent to the governor for executive approval.

requires the revocation of vehicle registration for 180 days and suspension of driving privileges for 180 days. INTERSTATE HIGHWAY SPEED LIMITS * House Bill 565 provides that court costs exceeding $25 and other administrative fees collected from citations issued for exceeding the posted speed limit by less than 10 mph. on interstate highways be credited to the "Louisiana Highway Safety Fund." HB565 awaits action by the full House. * House Bill 1233 provides that law enforcement agencies of a municipality with a home rule charter would be prohibited from issuing traffic citations to a person driving on an interstate unless at least one linear mile in each direction of the interstate is within the city limits of the municipality. HB1233 awaits action by the full House. SPECIAL LICENSE PLATES * House Bill 1238 authorizes the issuance of a special "For Hire" plate to owners of taxi cabs, limousines, horse-drawn carriages, pedicabs, charter tour vehicles, sightseeing tour vehicles, courtesy vehicles, non-emergency medical vehicles, airport shuttles, and accessible taxicabs owned or

RETIREMENT * House Bill 38, approved by the full House 91-3, would increase the retirement age of state employees and teachers hired after July 1 from 60 years of age with at least five years of service to 62 with at least five years of service. DRIVERS LICENSE * House Bill 1252, pending House floor action, would extend the time limit to renew drivers' licenses from four to six years. DRIVERS WITHOUT LIABILITY INSURANCE * House Bill 851 would increase penalties for operating a vehicle without liability insurance and requires the Department of Public Safety and Corrections to revoke the registration, impound the vehicle and cancel the vehicle license plate of a vehicle not covered by liability insurance. HB851 requires a minimum fine of $500 and a maximum fine of $1,000 and

operated by companies licensed by the city of New Orleans. * Senate Bill 116 creates a special prestige license plate for the Louisiana Future Farmers of America Foundation, Inc. The annual $25 royalty fee shall be used solely to support the activities of the Louisiana Future Farmers of American Association. CHRISTMAS DISPLAYS IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS * House Bill 876, pending House floor action, would authorize a school board to display scenes or symbols associated with traditional celebrations including a menorah or a Christmas image such as a nativity or Christmas tree, if the display includes a scene or symbol of more than one religion or one religion and at least one secular scene or symbol. Additionally, students and school staff would be allowed to offer traditional greetings including Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, Happy holidays and Happy Kwanzaa. HB876 would prohibit a display relating to a traditional celebration from including a message that encourages adherence to a particular religious belief. GUNS IN PUBLIC PLACES * The Senate approved Senate Bill 651 that adds legislators to a list of officials allowed to carry concealed weapons anywhere in the state, including any place open to the public, except in the State Capitol building. Additionally, SB651 requires lawmakers to receive Peace Officers Standards and Training certification and to have a concealed weapon permit.

HEROIN DEALERS * Senate Bill 87, passed by a Senate vote of 34-2, would allow judges to sentence convicted heroin dealers to a maximum penalty of 99 years imprisonment. DOMESTIC VIOLENCE * House Bill 1052, which passed the House, creates the Domestic Violence Prevention Commission within the Department of Children and Family Services to assist in the development and coordination of domestic violence programs. The duties of the commission would include the following: 1.) Assist local and state leaders in developing and coordinating domestic violence programs. 2.) Conduct a continuing comprehensive review of all existing public and private domestic violence programs to identify gaps in prevention and intervention services and to increase coordination among public and private programs to strengthen prevention and intervention services. 3.) Make recommendations with respect to domestic violence prevention and intervention. 4.) Develop a state needs assessment and a comprehensive and integrated service delivery approach that meets the needs of all domestic violence victims. 5.) Establish a method to transition domestic violence service providers toward evidence-based national best practices focusing on outreach and prevention. 6.) Develop a plan that ensures state laws on domestic violence are properly implemented and provides training to law enforcement and the judiciary. 7.) Develop a framework to collect and integrate data and measure program outcomes.

Page -2-

* House Bill 421, which passed the House 99-2, adds provisions to treatment programs designed specifically for perpetrators of family violence to include treatment programs conducted by licensed mental health professionals or any other similar treatment program administered by an individual qualified by education, training or experience in domestic violence treatment and approved by the court. BURN INJURIES/NOTIFICATION * Senate Bill 351, reported favorably by the Committee on Administration of Criminal Justice, changes present law to require that mortal burn injuries shall be reported to the State Fire Marshal's office within two hours of the initial examination of the victim. * Senate Bill 388 adds the offense of "injury by arson" to the definition of offense involving arson under present law, and requires offenders to register with the state fire marshal for a period of 10 years rather than five. PAROLE ELIGIBILITY * Senate Bill 383, reported favorably, provides that a current offense shall not be counted as a second or subsequent offense if more than 10 years have lapsed between the date of commission of the current offense and the expiration of the offender's maximum sentence of the previous conviction. In computing the intervals of time, any period of parole, probation or incarceration by an offender in a penal institution shall not be included in the computation of any of the 10-year periods between the expiration of the offender's maximum sentence and the next succeeding offense.

MANDATORY SCREENING/ NEWBORNS * House Concurrent Resolution 81, pending House floor action, authorizes the Department of Health and Hospitals to add adrenoleukodystrophy to the list of mandatory screenings performed on newborns. LICENSING/GROUP HOMES/PUBLIC COMMENT * House Bill 1155, pending House floor action, provides that the Department of Health and Hospitals shall require as a condition of licensure that any person or entity seeking to establish and operate a therapeutic group home for youth suffering from mental illness have the approval of the governing authority of the parish in which the group home is intended to be located. Additionally, the parish governing authority may grant such approval only after providing an opportunity for public comment concerning the application for licensure of the group home. The provisions of HB1155 would be limited to the following parishes: 1.) A parish with a population of more than 25,000 and less than 26,000 according to the latest federal decennial census. 2.) A parish with a population of more than 35,000 and less than 35,700 according to the latest federal decennial census. 3.) A parish with a population of more than 52,200 and less than 52,700 according to the latest federal decennial census. FITAP/CASH ASSISTANCE TO NEEDY FAMILIES * House Bill 1176, pending House final passage, provides for restrictions on the use of cash assistance benefits delivered through the Family Independence Temporary Assistance Program (FITAP) and the Kinship Care

Page -3-

Subsidy Program (KCSP); and for restrictions on use by recipients and acceptance by businesses of electronic benefits transfer cards. Under this proposed law, FITAP beneficiaries and KCSP beneficiaries would be prohibited from expending cash assistance in an electronic benefits transaction at any of the following places: Liquor store; gaming establishment; retail establishment that provides adult-oriented entertainment in which performers disrobe or perform in an unclothed state for entertainment purposes; adult bookstore; adult paraphernalia store; sexually oriented business; commercial body art facility; nail salon; jewelry store; amusement ride; amusement attraction; bail bonds company; bar; cruise ship; psychic business; any establishment where persons under 18 are not permitted to enter. Additionally, FITAP beneficiaries and KCSP beneficiaries would be prohibited from expending cash assistance in an electronic benefits transaction for the purchase of alcohol beverages, tobacco products, lottery tickets or jewelry. Further, HB provides for violations and civil fines and authorizes the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) to suspend or close the case of any recipient who violates the provisions of the proposed law and provides for violations and civil fines for retailers who violate the proposed law. Finally, HB1176 provides that money collected through civil fines shall be deposited in the Fraud Detection Fund and may be appropriated to DCFS for the enhancement of fraud detection and recovery activities. LOBBYIST/FAMILY MEMBERS * House Bill 459, pending consideration by the full House, would permit an immediate family member of a legislator to lobby the

legislature if registered as a lobbyist one year prior to Jan. 9, 2012. RAW MILK * Under provisions of House Bill 247, reported by substitute, a farmer would be authorized to sell unpasteurized whole milk or goat milk on the premises where the raw milk is produced, provided that the average monthly number of gallons sold does not exceed 500 gallons. Additionally, the seller would be required to post a two-by-four foot sign stating the name and address of the farm with the seller's contact information and the following statement: "This product, sold for personal use and not for resale, is fresh whole milk that has NOT been pasteurized. Neither this farm nor the milk sold by this farm has been inspected by the state of La. The consumer assumes all liability for health issues that may result from the consumption of this product." Likewise, the milk container would be labeled with the same information. The proposed law also would require the farmer selling raw milk to supply the consumer with information describing the standards used by the farm or dairy along with results of tests performed on the animals, tests performed on the milk an dan explanation of the tests and test results. Additionally, the proposed law requires a farm or dairy producing raw milk to register by providing a written statement to the Department of Health and Hospitals containing all of the following information: (1.) The name of the farmer, farm or dairy. (2.) A valid, current address of the farmer, farm or dairy. (3.) A statement that raw milk is being produced at the farm or dairy.

Page -4-

Also, the legislation: 1.) Requires a farmer who sells fresh unpasteurized goat milk or whole milk to permit inspection of the cows or goats and barns by any customer upon request. 2.) Sets forth the chemical, bacteriological and temperature standards for raw milk sales. 3.) Sets forth the sanitation standards for raw milk sales. 4.) Sets forth the health standards for animals producing the raw milk. Finally, the proposed law requires each producer of raw milk to develop and maintain procedures for the notification of regulatory officials, consumer notification and product recall, and to implement any of these procedures if the producer knows or has reason to believe circumstances exist that may adversely affect its safety for the consumer. MUNICIPAL INCORPORATIONS * House Bill 768, approved, 91-1, provides for procedures and time limits for municipal incorporation petitions. Petitioners would have 18 months to collect names if 5,000 or more qualified voters live in the area to be incorporated. Additionally, the provisions of HB768 shall not apply to any petition proposing the incorporation of an area that contains the signatures of at least 1,000 electors residing in the unincorporated area at the time the proposed law becomes effective. * Senate Bill 674, which passed the Senate 32-6, places a moratorium on municipal incorporation petition drives in progress after Jan. 1, 2014, and creates a July 23, 2014, deadline to collect petition signatures. * House Bill 1212 calls for a special

election to determine whether the unincorporated area described in a proposed incorporation petition can become a municipality, and provides that all qualified voters in the parish in which the proposed area is situated shall be entitled to vote.

Page -5-

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful