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March 22, 2005

ACLU Chief Defends Prayer Ruling

The Advocate reports that Joe Cook, head of the ACLU in Louisiana, defended a federal district judge's ruling banning prayer by the Tangipahoa Parish School Board. Cook stated that, despite criticism from the Governor and others, the decision was sound. Judge Berrigan's prior leadership of the Louisiana ACLU did not affect his ruling, and his fitness to rule in the matter was not questioned by the attorneys for the school board.

Posted by Capital Clerks at 11:21 AM

March 17, 2005

Juvenile Justice Project Contract Suspended

The Advocate reports that the Juvenile Justice Project has had its contract suspended by the state. The project provides lawyers for juveniles whose adjudications are up for periodic review. The Governor's Executive Counsel stated that the review of the contract is not politically motivated, but has been instituted to make sure that the money provided by the state is actually going to indigent defense and not other programs.

Posted by Capital Clerks at 10:13 AM

March 10, 2005

State Senator Wants to Change Stelly Plan

James David Cain is continuing his ongoing mission to undo portions of the Stelly Plan according to the American Press in Lake Charles. The State Senator would like to restore some itemized deductions. Cain failed to get a similar measure passed last year.

Posted by Capital Clerks at 10:17 AM

February 15, 2005

Dept. of Agriculture Did Not Get Proper Permits For Mill

The Times-Picayune reports that the Department of Agriculture did not obtain all of the permits needed before starting construction on a sugar mill in Lacassine. DEQ regulators found that the violation was not willful and resulted from a "misinterpretation" of the law on the part of the Department of Agriculture.

Posted by Capital Clerks at 10:13 AM

February 04, 2005

Officals Learn About Public Records

According to The Town Talk public officials received a primer on public records. The talk dealt with officials responsibilities in producing public records after they have been requested. The talk emphasized that public officials can be personally liable if they do not comply with the request.

Posted by AJH at 09:05 AM

February 01, 2005

Pardon Board Can't Require Court Costs for First Offender Pardons

A recently released Attorney General's Opinion states that the Constitution prohibits requiring those eligible for first offender pardons to pay their outstanding court costs. The Times-Picayune reports that the opinion states that the State Constitution requires that non-violent first offenders automatically receive a pardon.

Posted by Capital Clerks at 10:12 AM

January 27, 2005

Supreme Court Declines Hearing on License Plate Case

The Advocate reports that the Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal involving South Carolina's issuance of specialty license plates to an anti abortion cause without issuing plates to a pro choice cause. In that case, the U.S. Fourth Circuit ruled that South Carolina violated the first amendment rights of the pro choice group. A suit involving Louisiana's "Choose Life" plates is currently being reviewed by the Fifth Circuit. Louisiana's plates were ruled unconstitutional by District Judge Stanwood Duval, Jr. in 1993.

Posted by Capital Clerks at 10:43 AM

January 18, 2005

Governor Pardons Civil Rights Activist

Governor Blanco pardoned Rev. Betty Claiborne yesterday, forty years after she was arrested in an attempt to use a segregated swimming pool in Baton Rouge. The Advocate reports that Rev. Claiborne was held in jail for 10 days following her arrest, but she feels that her actions were well worth it in the fight against segregation and racism.

Posted by Capital Clerks at 09:31 AM
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