The “So Basically…” News Update 

1.) CORRUPTION ALERT!

— What happened: “A. Wayne Lawson, a key witness in the attempted election bribery case against Ascension Parish President Kenny Matassa and a Gonzales business man, failed to turn over his tax returns Monday morning as required by a subpoena from Matassa's defense team.” (The Advocate’s David Mitchell)

— So basically… This political soap opera if far from being concluded. This tale, if ultimately proven true, shows just how cheap political corruption is running these days. The alleged bribe consisted of $1,200 for pickup truck repairs and a parish job.

2.) NUTRIA TAILS FOR SELL

— What happened: “State wildlife officials are recruiting more landowners, hunters and trappers in the battle against nutria, the destructive rodent that has damaged tens of thousands of acres of coastal wetlands.” (The Houma Courier’s Holly Duncan)

— So basically… If you need a side hustle, here you go. You can get $5 per tail.

3.) POLLING, SCHMOLLING

— What happened: “With a little more than eight weeks to go, polls are showing marginal differences between the major, if little known, candidates for state treasurer. The campaigns, however, see the same anemic numbers as proof their candidates are breaking away from the pack in the Oct. 14 election.” (The Advocate’s Mark Ballard)

— So basically… Polls paid for by campaigns would never be released if they reflected poorly on the associated candidates. Plus numbers just don’t mean a whole lot in this race right now. No one has completely run away with it and no one has completely fallen off. It’s going to be a hard-fought and quiet contest.

4.) NEVER GONNA HAPPEN

— What happened: “In the face of budget cuts and declining enrollment, some states are merging systems and campuses to balance the scales. That isn’t the answer for Louisiana, one expert says, but there’s a simple way to get campuses to collaborate more. Money.” (The Shreveport Times’ Leigh Guidry)

— So basically… We’re just going to have to accept that campuses are sacred cows in Louisiana. But the idea of making more universities work together and share courses could be a cost-savings idea worth pursing (again) ahead of the 2018 storm.

5.) FOSTER CARE WAKE-UP CALL

— What happened: “Problems within Louisiana's foster care program have been noted for

some time, but a new audit out shows that the Department of Children and Family Services' struggles with high caseloads and staff turnover, as well as the agency's failure to perform required background checks on foster care providers, has affected the ability to ensure the safety of children in foster care.” (The Advocate’s Elizabeth Crisp)

— So basically… The number of children in foster care in Louisiana are on the rise, but the department’s resources aren’t being expanded to handle the increase. Yet another reminder of how touchy next year’s sessions will be if more revenue isn’t created or if lawmakers fail to overhaul the budget and spending.

News clips provided by ON TRACK WITH MARUSAK online news clipping service. Day or night, receive breaking political and government news from across the state right in your email inbox. For more information about the exhaustive daily service, contact Jennifer Marusak at jmarusak@bellsouth.net.

LOWDOWN: How A Podcast Gets Made

Here at LaPolitics, we like to use our videos and podcasts to teach you something you don’t already know. So in this week’s Lowdown, we’re

Ronnie, Riverboats & Re-Election Campaigns

His father pitched for The New York Yankees before gaining his political chops in Bunkie, Louisiana, just like his son did. So who is it

SPONSORED: Celebrating 25 Years Of Burkenroad Reports

Twenty-five years ago, Professor Peter Ricchiuti founded a unique learning opportunity for Tulane University graduate students that has not

PRE-SINE DIE Q&A WITH SEN. BRET ALLAIN

LaPolitics: That final Finance vote in HB 1 was such a break from the session rhythm. Quick, unemotional and transactional. Was that

ALFORD: The Capitol’s Dirty Little Secret

The governor of Louisiana is not politically omnipotent. (I’m referring to the storied position of governor, not the man or the woman who

RABALAIS’ POLITICAL HISTORY: John Breaux’s Last-Minute Win Over Henson Moore

U.S. Sen. Russell B. Long’s announcement that he would retire after 36 years in the upper chamber was unexpected, as he had been building

PHOTO GALLERY: The Final Four Hours Of The Special Session That Never Was

   

“Members, It Is 12 a.m.”

It’s called a photo finish for a reason, not that the House, Senate and Edwards Administration would need photographic evidence to help sort

VIDEO: Who’s The Man Behind The Tree?

When politicians want your money, the idea is bound to come up. "Don't tax you. Don't tax me. Tax the man behind the tree." But who is

The LaPolitics Report: Meet Monty

This episode features Monty Sullivan, the president of the Louisiana Community and Technical College System, who provides a political read

LaPolitics Weekly Special Edition: FISCAL CLIFFHANGER

THE RUNDOWN Weekend action slated at Capitol… Sunday is budget-tax day on Senate floor… Sales tax amendments doomed… But the rate is still

LaPolitics Weekly: THEY SAID IT

“I didn't write the Constitution. I’m just trying to follow it.” —Appropriations Chair Cameron Henry, during HB 1 floor debate “I’m trying

Major Moves In SOS Race: Free announces, Werner out & JNK wades in

Like he did during last year’s special election for state treasurer, U.S. Sen. John Kennedy is picking sides again in the special election

FISCAL CLIFFHANGER: A Political Melodrama Told In Three Acts

FISCAL CLIFFHANGER A POLITICAL MELODRAMA TOLD IN THREE ACTS How a failed sales tax bill set the special session’s tone, bridged a deep

What The Heck Is John Alario Saying?

Have you ever listened closely to the words being said into the mic Senate President John Alario while he’s overseeing the business of the

SPONSORED: CGI Announces Major Louisiana Expansion

During his special session speech on May 22, Gov. John Bel Edwards, along with IT company CGI executive Dave Henderson, announced that CGI

#LA: John F. Jones & Social Media Advertising

“Social media is not magic. It’s just one of our many channels that we can use.” That’s the view of CenturyLink Public Policy and

JBE, Mitch & The Donald

This story was originally published in LaPolitics Weekly on May 18, 2018. Wish you had read it then? Become a part of our elite community by

SPONSORED: Congratulations to Bruce Greenstein and LHC Group!

Congratulations to Bruce Greenstein on this week’s announcement that he will return to Louisiana to lead innovation at LHC Group as Chief

THE LaPOLITICS REPORT: Picard, Politics & Ponies

In our latest podcast episode of The LaPolitics Report, Tyron Picard of The Picard Group drops in for a conversation about a bygone era in

CAPITOL GAINS: At Home with Clay

 “This is what America wants to see.” That was the promise from a beer-toting Congressman Clay Higgins in this episode of Capitol

SPONSORED: The 106th First Lady’s Luncheon

The Picard Group was honored to attend the 106th First Lady’s Luncheon, honoring The First Lady of the United States, Melania Trump. Held on

IT’S PERSONAL

This story was originally published in LaPOLITICS Weekly on May 4, 2018. Wish you had read it then? Become a part of our elite community by

THIS COULD BE YOU

You could say legislators in Illinois really dropped the ball when they failed to pass an operating budget for their state prior to the 2016

POD: Politics & Drilling, According To Briggs

In this episode of The LaPolitics Report, we talk to Louisiana Oil and Gas Association President Gifford Briggs, who recently succeeded his