BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — The Louisiana House has agreed to rewrite the state's constitutional protections for weapon owners, striking a provision that gives the Legislature explicit authority to limit concealed handguns. Critics say the plan could lead to the nullification of most of Louisiana's gun limits.
State education officials say the percentage of Louisiana public school students reaching "basic" achievement levels on standardized tests grew from 66 percent to 68 percent this year. Statewide, improvement was noted at almost every grade level and every subject.
Roughly 1,500 astrologers from more than 30 countries have converged at the Mariott Hotel on Canal Street for the United Astrology Conference, where they will discuss planetary alignments and the role the solar system has in such matters as the economy and upcoming U.S. presidential race.
GRETNA, La. (AP) — The brother of imprisoned former Congressman Bill Jefferson has surrendered in Jefferson Parish. Authorities say Archie Jefferson was wanted for misapplication of funds and theft for renovation work conducted at a Marrero home.
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Gov. Bobby Jindal's proposal to hike the amount rank-and-file state workers pay for retirement has advanced to the full House for debate, despite criticism a tie to pay raises could cost the state more than it benefits. It's unclear when the 2 percentage point increase in pension contributions would be levied on employees.
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — An attempt to tap into Louisiana's "rainy day" fund to fill a $200 million deficit this year is mired in negotiations. Members of a bloc of conservative House Republicans say they won't support using the rainy day fund to fill the gap in the current year budget, unless the Senate goes along with limitations on the use of one-time money in next year's spending plans.
NEW ORLEANS (AP) — Officials are expected to make a sponsorship announcement at a news conference tonight for the Super Bowl Host Committee Volunteer Services Program. The news conference was to include representatives from the New Orleans Saints and the Greater New Orleans Sports Foundation.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency has come up with $103,000 to help replace contents of the Orleans Parish Criminal District Court damaged during Hurricane Katrina.
Following the 2005 storm, the basement of the courthouse flooded, destroying the contents of court offices, including the Judicial Administration Office which handles administrative functions required for the court to operate.
FEMA announced on Monday that the contents to be replaced include computer equipment and two-way radios, as well as drug testing equipment.
A federal magistrate has scheduled a hearing on a former BP engineer's request for permission to travel freely throughout the U.S. while he awaits a trial on charges he deleted text messages about the oil company's response to the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico.
U.S. Magistrate Daniel Knowles III is set to hear arguments May 29 on Kurt Mix's request.
Earlier this month, Knowles ordered Mix to limit his travel to Louisiana, Texas, Massachusetts and New York after a prosecutor claimed he had intended to leave the country for a job in Australia and wouldn't return.