The reports have become a resource for many of the Louisiana voting public and outline where candidates stand on various social and economic issues, as well as the amendments that are on the ballot and the significance for supporting or opposing those amendments.
In a blatant attempt at electioneering, one Lafayette City-Parish Councilman has proposed free bus rides on election day. While not expressly bringing folks to the polls, the rides will surely be used in an attempt to sway votes and at getting more voters to the polls in an attempt to influence the election.
What could possibly go wrong????
Alethea Torrellas Shapiro had been using her children regularly to harass senators, such as Sen. Bill Cassidy, on Capitol Hill. According to the Daily Caller, Shapiro is “an activist who calls extremist feminist activist Linda Sarsour her hero and regularly goes on profanity-laced tirades against GOP senators like Chuck Grassley.”
Baton Rouge, LA — Louisiana Lawsuit Abuse Watch (LLAW) today released the 2018 Economic Benefits of Tort Reform, an assessment measuring the impact of excessive civil court costs on Louisiana’s economy. The study, conducted by The Perryman Group for Citizens Against Lawsuit Abuse (CALA), found that Louisiana is losing jobs and revenue because of the state’s civil justice system. The assessment included extensive survey data, industry information and a variety of corroborative source material. The Perryman Group analyzed outcomes in the state using Ohio, which has engaged in notable tort reform in the recent past, as a benchmark.
The total current impact of excessive tort costs on the Louisiana economy amounts to estimated losses of $1.1 billion in annual direct costs and $1.5 billion in output (gross product) annually. About 15,556 jobs are lost when dynamic effects are considered. All major industry groups are negatively impacted, with retail trade, business services, health services and other service industries showing the greatest losses. The yearly fiscal losses (as of 2018) are estimated at $76.4 million in state revenues and $64.3 million to local governments. These effects are based on the current size of the state’s population and economy and can be expected to rise over time in the absence of meaningful civil justice reforms.
The assessment found that an inadequately balanced justice system can be counterproductive. A system that generates exorbitant levels of damages or numbers of awards may result in negative impacts through the misallocation of society’s scarce economic and human resources. Some of these negative effects include increased costs and risks of doing business in an area; disincentives for innovations which promote consumer welfare; enhanced incentives to file lawsuits of questionable merit resulting in increased inefficiencies; higher insurance premiums than would exist under a more balanced approach; and increased health care costs and declining availability of medical services, among others.
“These findings clearly show that civil justice reform must be a priority in Louisiana. Frivolous lawsuits and exorbitant plaintiff awards impact all sectors of our economy and hurt Louisiana families, as costs are ultimately passed down to them in the form of higher prices for goods and services,” said LLAW Executive Director Lana Venable.
Civil justice reforms that have resulted in the greatest reduction in losses are those aimed at reducing frivolous lawsuits, capping appeal bonds, setting negligence standards and limiting non-economic damages. These reforms have been shown to enhance innovation and increase productivity, as well as to improve judicial efficiency and economic performance.
According to the assessment, when working properly, the judicial system provides a critical institutional framework that provides a fair and equitable forum for resolving disputes, compensates plaintiffs who have been legitimately harmed and deters undesirable behavior.
“A healthy legal system should ensure fairness for both truly impaired individuals and small and large businesses operating in Louisiana. Imbalances in the system lead to unpredictability for consumers and businesses, costing jobs and resulting in constrained economic growth,” according to Louisiana Coalition for Common Sense Executive Director Jim Harris.
Louisiana was ranked 50 th in the US Chamber Institute for Legal Reform’s 2017 Lawsuit Abuse Climate Survey, which measures the reasonability and balance of each states’ tort liability systems. Louisiana also earned the number eight ranking in the American Tort Reform Foundation’s 2017-18 Judicial
Hellholes Report based on systematic application of civil laws and court procedures.
About Louisiana Lawsuit Abuse Watch (LLAW)
Louisiana Lawsuit Abuse Watch (LLAW) is a high-impact watchdog group with nearly 20,000 supporters across the state dedicated to fixing Louisiana’s broken legal system through transparency, accountability and lawsuit reform. Visit us on Facebook, Twitter (@ReformLouisiana) and www.llaw.org.
About the Louisiana Coalition for Common Sense (LCCS)
The Louisiana Coalition for Common Sense (LCCS) is a group of professional associations, companies and individuals committed to ensuring a fair legal climate for both truly impaired individuals and small and large businesses operating in Louisiana.
About The Perryman Group (TPG)
An economic and financial analysis firm, The Perryman Group (TPG provides clients with well-documented, carefully considered answers to even the most complex questions. For more than 30 years,
The Perryman Group has met the challenges of thousands of clients through a systematic approach and a level of performance that assures a consistent standard of excellence. The firm has been involved in scores of major events shaping the economic landscape, from crucial corporate locations to landmark legislation to important regulatory policies to notable judicial decisions.
Pulling no punches regarding the Mueller investigation, President Trump jabs at CBS News and 60 Minutes.
Like a boss……………………..
As a survivor of a politically motivated attack, it is tragic to think this is an acceptable state of political discourse in our country. I refuse to stand for this and I will continue to call for an end to it. A healthy, strong democracy is not possible if anyone lives in fear of expressing their views.
If this is going to stop, it must start with Democratic leaders, who need to condemn, rather than promote these dangerous calls to action.
WASHINGTON, DC – Landmark legislation produced under the leadership of House Water Resources Subcommittee Chairman Garret Graves (South Louisiana) to reform the U.S. Corps of Engineers will be signed into law this week. The America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018, which unanimously passed the U.S. House of Representatives on September 13, 2018, will be voted on today in the U.S. Senate, and the president is expected to sign the bill into law later this week.
This is the first Corps reform bill produced with Graves serving as chairman over the House Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee, which has jurisdiction over the Corps of Engineers, Environmental Protection Agency and other agencies.
“On our current trajectory, the Corps will finish its $100 billion of backlogged, federally authorized projects approximately never,” said Graves. “We have to stop pushing paper and start turning dirt. Fundamental changes are needed, and this bill begins moving us in that direction.”
The America’s Water Infrastructure Act of 2018 (AWIA)is the latest in a portfolio of legislative achievements that Graves has been implementing as part of his broader strategy to replace the federal government’s wasteful spending of billions of dollars after disasters with smart, pre-disaster investments that better prepare and protect our communities at a much lower cost to taxpayers. Other strategy components include the Disaster Reform and Recovery Act, which was signed into law last Friday; full funding for the Comite flood protection, West Shore hurricane protection and other important projects announced in July; and Graves’ bill to increase offshore energy revenue sharing funding that passed through the Natural Resources Committee in September. AIWA paves the way for major reforms of how the nation plans, designs, constructs and funds flood control, hurricane protection, navigation, coastal/ecosystem restoration and other projects.
“This bill is about delivering proactive solutions so that communities actually benefit from projects instead of having to endure decades of studies and inaction,” added Graves.
AIWA focuses on four major themes:
·Cutting the red-tape and bureaucracy associated with Corps of Engineers’ projects
·Preventing redundancies and excessive costs
·Providing greater project roles to state and local governments
·Changing the Corps of Engineers focus from process and procedure to project completion
Provisions inserted in the House and final bill by Graves include:
·Providing the State of Louisiana an estimated $500,000,000 in credit for coastal restoration and other projects in the state. This credit can be used by the state in lieu of cash cost shares required by the state.
·Beginning a process to transition the Corps of Engineers’ mission to a civilian infrastructure agency where it can be a top agency priority.
·Forcing the Corps to disclose internal costs and expenses.
·Requiring a reanalysis of the Old River Control Structure in Louisiana to end the static 70% Mississippi River, 30% Atchafalaya River split of flow. Under the new model, the Corps would migrate toward a dynamic operations plan to maximize navigation, flood control, coastal restoration and other objectives.
·Allowing the state and levee districts to construct authorized Corps projects without re-permitting environmental and other project considerations.
·Eliminating the requirement that the state and levee districts go through a duplicative regulatory and permitting process when building authorized projects without the Corps of Engineers.
Graves continued: “There are literally tens of billions of dollars in authorized Corps of Engineers projects in Louisiana. If we are going to restore our coast and protect our communities, we must change the way these projects are developed and delivered.”
Other Louisiana-centric provisions include (provision sponsors):
·Preventing the purchase of property from private landowners when projects can be constructed using an easement, donation or other less expensive means (Higgins/Graves)
·Expanding upon opportunities to use material dredged from rivers and bayous for coastal restoration (Higgins/Graves)
·Expediting Feasibility Studies and Advancing Project Design:
oJ. Bennett Johnston Waterway project improvements (Abraham/Johnson)
oNorthshore flood risk reduction (Scalise/Cassidy/Kennedy)
oOuachita-Black Rivers navigation improvements (Abraham/Cassidy/Kennedy)
oBaptist’s Collette Bayou channel deepening (Scalise/Cassidy/Kennedy)
oHouma Navigation Canal Deepening (Scalise/Graves/Cassidy/Kennedy)
oExtend the construction deadline for a hydropower facility on the J. Bennett Johnston Waterway (Abraham/Johnson)
“This bill is good for our infrastructure, good for jobs, and good for America,”added Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman Bill Shuster (R-PA).
Graves recently secured $3,000,000,000 in new federal funding from five sources to fully fund numerous decades-stalled Corps of Engineers projects in Louisiana. This bill complements those efforts, which will together produce better protection for our homes, communities and businesses; better federal performance; and cost savings to the American people.
MOST PLAQUEMINES PARISH VOTERS OPPOSE PARISH’S OIL AND GAS LAWSUIT; 99% SAY INDUSTRY IS CRITICAL TO ECONOMY
Plaquemines Parish residents are speaking loud and clear: they stand with the oil and gas industry and want to see it continue to play a vital role in their community and their future. The oil and gas industry provides more than 1,500 jobs in Plaquemines Parish with a $264 million payroll, paying $20 million annually in parish property taxes.
Drug companies and law enforcement struggle to stop online sales of counterfeit versions of medications like Xanax laced with fentanyl that can kill unsuspecting users
Opinion by Jeff Landry, Attorney General of Louisiana
Recently, I participated in a national TV interview on CNN regarding an important lawsuit. I joined this lawsuit with 17 other Attorneys General and two Governors on the legality of the Affordable Care Act. It is an important topic.
Unfortunately, while our lawsuit is focused solely on the rule of law, the television producers used my time on air in a farcical attempt just to attack the strategy and get a soundbite. Though I anticipated some sky-is-falling hysteria that has become a staple of extremists when discussing the ACA, I felt strongly someone needed to get the truth to CNN’s flailing audience.
That truth is the Republican state officials who signed onto this suit are resolved in our efforts to fight unconstitutional policies, and we understand that the remains of the unconstitutional ACA need to be dismantled before their inevitable collapse does any further damage to families and businesses.
Rising costs, undesirable plans, and declining choices have been the status quo since the 2,300-page ACA was forced onto the American people. While a fortunate few in Louisiana may finally see, for the first time since 2011, less painful premium hikes – we know something different must be done to reduce the crippling financial burdens and to ensure our people can once again have the freedom to choose their own doctors.
But make no mistake about it: those involved in the lawsuit are not attacking sound law based on its policy failures. Policy decisions are for the Legislative Branch, which is something the Governor and his allies had to learn the hard way when I became Attorney General.
The ACA is unconstitutional. When the Supreme Court ruled on NFIB v. Sebelius – they found the individual mandate unlawful on its own, but legally permissible if attached to the federal government’s taxing authority. And since the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 has been signed into law, the tax penalty has been removed and the mandate now stands alone.
The hoops that the Supreme Court jumped through to uphold the individual mandate telegraphed the true extent of the ACA’s constitutional problems. Now that those hoops have been removed, the rule of law must prevail and the ACA must fall. This should be welcomed by all who cherish the Constitution and support our great republic.
If our lawsuit is successful and the ACA is removed from the books, states will be allowed to implement their own healthcare plans for their own citizens. Maine may be able to employ its previously preempted framework; Nebraska may realize the full potential of its direct primary care option for state workers; and most importantly, Louisiana – through our Legislature – would be free to enact rules and restrictions without fear of conflict pre-emption. In essence, Louisiana could use a system that works for Louisiana.
While I, like the overwhelming majority of my fellow Republicans, believe those with pre-existing conditions should be protected; I know that decision is up to our Legislature. If our lawsuit is successful, our own Legislature will craft future regulations and policies. Our own Louisiana House and Senate can work on better solutions to our healthcare problems, right here in our State. I stand ready to assist them.
As I have done since filing the lawsuit in February, I will continue discussions with our legislators. And as I have always done, I will keep fighting against government overreach and keep doing all that I legally can to make Louisiana an even better place to live, work, and raise our families.
Jeff Landry is the Attorney General of Louisiana. Originally from St. Martinsville, General Landry holds a Law Degree from Loyola University, he is a veteran of Desert Storm, and a former member of the United States House of Representatives. www.agjefflandry.com