Weekly Legislative Update: April 26

Current Events & News, Legislation | 04/25/2021

Brigitte Nieland
Government Affairs Director

The second week of the legislative session moved at a fast pace, with Stand tracking and supporting bills in several different committees.

On Wednesday, April 21st, the Senate Education Committee met and considered SB 10 (Sen. Fields) – Reported favorably out of Senate Education; Recommitted to Senate Finance due to the attached fiscal note – SB 10 would make kindergarten mandatory and require school attendance beginning at age 5. Stand SUPPORTS this bill because it promotes access to critical early learning programs.

On Thursday, April 22nd, two key House committees handled and passed four bills that Stand supports.

House Administration of Criminal Justice

HB 32 (Rep. Selders) – Engrossed and Passed to Third Reading (next step is to be heard by the full House on April 27th) – SB 32 would increase the total number of credits that may be earned by an offender upon earning a bachelor’s or master’s degree. Stand SUPPORTS this bill because it promotes education within our criminal justice system.

HB 46 (Rep. James) – Engrossed and Passed to Third Reading (next step is to be heard by the full House on April 27th) – HB 46 adjusts some procedures in pre-trial proceedings including setting time limits for courts to conduct preliminary examination, making the defense counsel eligible to determine who shall be present during an examination (in addition to attorney general and district attorney), among other changes. Stand SUPPORTS this bill.

House Education

HB 85 (Rep. McKnight) – Reported favorably out of House Education; Recommitted to House Appropriations due to the attached fiscal note – HB 85 would create a literacy program for certain public school students. Stand SUPPORTS this bill because it will expand literacy programs.

HCR 11 (Rep. Hughes) – Engrossed and Passed to Third Reading (next step is to be heard by full House on April 27th) – HCR 11 requests BESE develop a plan for providing school literacy coaches for students in kindergarten through second grade in elementary schools identified as needing improvement. Stand SUPPORTS this bill because it will provide additional support to our teachers and improve student literacy rates.

We are very glad these five bills were passed out of their respective committees and will continue to track their process through the system. Adopting these bills and making them laws in Louisiana would go a long way in leveling the playing field for our students and citizens.

Want a refresher on how a bill becomes a law? Check out our previous blog that provides an overview of the process

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