The 2017 Legislative Session of the Louisiana Legislature convenes on Monday, April 10. Every year, the majority of bills that eventually become law are “prefiled,” which means that they are filed prior to the beginning of the session. Here are some highlights among the prefiled bills so far.
First among these is SB 144 from Ronnie Johns (R-Lake Charles), who has filed a bill to prevent 18-to-20 year olds from working as strippers. The stated goal of the bill is to combat human trafficking. The Honorable Rep. must have been drunker than a poet on payday when he came up with this one.
HB5 from Patrick Jefferson (D-Homer) creates a Mayor's Court in Athens, Louisiana. Wouldn't be all that notable, except for the fact that the population of Athens consists of 262 souls. I've included a picture of the actual town hall of Athens, LA. Looks more like the front of a sketchy combination headshop/sex shop in a rundown strip mall. You can't make this stuff up.
We have HB 67 from Barbara Norton (D-Shreveport), which CREATES THE CRIME OF UNLAWFULLY SUPPLYING A CHILD WITH AN UZI!!!!!!!!! Apparently, we have a huge problem in this state with adults providing Uzis to children. The thing about this bill is that I'm sure the conservative, gun-nut types will oppose it.
HB 214 by Dodie Horton (R-Haughton) would prohibit the roadside sale of domestic rabbits. Who knew it was legal in the first place?
And of course, the Senate is getting involved in the action as well.
SB 24 comes from my man J.P. Morrell (D-New Orleans). It exempts diapers and feminine hygiene products from state and local sales and use tax. That would actually be pretty helpful to me….well the diapers part anyways…..
SB 119 by Rick Ward, III (R-Port Allen) is a good example of a “local bill.” Essentially, it gives the state land office to lease a certain piece of property in Iberville Parish to a company known only as Williams, Inc. No word as to whether Sen. Ward has an ownership interest in Williams, Inc.
SB 144 from Ronnie Johns (R-Lake Charles) would prohibit nudity in strip clubs that sell alcohol. Two thoughts here. First, darn…... Second, what about BYOB strip clubs?
They finally got me on SB 127 by Francis Thompson (R-Delhi – yes apparently there is a Delhi, LA), which seeks to prohibit one from spraying a coating on their license plate to prevent a traffic camera from getting a good view on your plate and you getting a speeding ticket. I can assure you from first hand experience that those sprays don't work anyways.
Of special and serious note note are HB 101 and SB 142, prefiled by Terry Landry (D-New Iberia) and Dan Claitor (R-Baton Rouge) respectively. Both seek to eliminate the death penalty in Louisiana for offenses committed after August 1, 2017. Perhaps more on these later…..