Baton Rouge ( Associated Press) – Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards vetoed 17 recently passed bills on Monday, including legislation that would toughen criminal punishment and allow government entities based on a person’s COVID-19 vaccine status. but shall be prohibited from refusing to enter the building.
In total, Democrats have vetoed 23 bills. Passed during the regular legislative session of 2022, which got adjourned on 6 June. all except one Among the bills taken out by the governor were written by Republican lawmakers.
On Monday’s list of disapproved laws were several measures that would make criminal punishment and punishment stricter as well as create new criminal charges, including establishment. The offense of opposing a police officer by force or violence.
Edwards described the proposed new offense as “the opposite”. It will backfire from the 2017 reforms, which pushed to replace Louisiana’s status as the state with the highest incarceration rate in the country.
a bill This would require anyone over the age of 17 who was convicted of a production or manufacture to register with local law enforcement.
In his veto argument sent to lawmakers, Edwards wrote that the focus should be on treatment, rather than placing the “scarlet letter” on someone for a drug offense.
The governor also vetoed a bill This would reduce the rate at which the sentence for anyone convicted in the death of a peace officer or first responder killed in the line of duty could be shortened to one day every 30 days.
“This bill would treat a person convicted of an offense of negligence as unfairly as having been convicted of a willful offense,” Edwards wrote.
Only criminal penalties, punishment and charges were not the repealed bills. Edwards vetoed a bill Which would ban government entities and public schools from requiring proof of a COVID-19 vaccine for buildings or workers.
“The bill is unnecessary and perpetuates the false narrative that Louisiana residents face a vaccine for accessing government services or attending schools. This is not the case,” Edwards wrote. “The bill also seeks to undermine public confidence in vaccines, which are safe, effective and essential to public health.”
Additionally, two education-related bills that allow students to leave public schools and use annual state aid to attend private schools or pursue other education options also received the governor’s seal of disapproval.
one of the proposed measures — which passed 24-7 in the Senate and was endorsed 97-0 in the House — would help second and third grade students studying below grade level. second bill Will also create a program to “provide state funding for the education of exceptional students who are not enrolled in public school”.
Edwards has long been skeptical of the bills, particularly saying that the law does not establish accounts for parents to save money for education, and that the change could potentially lead to the Minimum Foundation Program – Louisiana. Will divert funding from a $4 billion funding source for public schools.
“As passed, this bill would allow children of wealthy parents to attend private schools subsidized by taxpayer dollars,” Edwards wrote in his argument.
But proponents say the law will give parents new options for helping children with disabilities or reading struggles have a tailored education for them.
Daniel Erspamer, CEO of the Pelicans Institute for Public Policy, said in a press release, “For too long, our state has been the norm when it comes to educational outcomes.” After the Governor’s veto. “Bold reforms like education savings accounts will help our children go to the schools that best suit their needs so that they can have a bright future.”
Legislators can return to the Capitol to revoke the governor’s veto if they wish.
Under the Constitution of Louisiana, a veto session is automatically scheduled when a governor vetos a law. However, the House can be annulled by a majority vote of either the House or the Senate – a decision that is often a consideration.
Last year, lawmakers held their first veto session since the current Louisiana Constitution was adopted in 1974.