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LA schools best heed Brumley's advice on new rule

Louisiana’s local education agencies should heed State Superintendent of Education Cade Brumley’s advice to disregard new and radical rulemaking from the federal Department of Education that likely is unconstitutional that conflicts with present and likely Louisiana law.

Last week, the Democrat Pres. Joe Biden Administration released its recodification of Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, which lays down rules to which state-regulated (because the U.S. Constitution grants states the power to regulate education provision) education provision must adhere in order tor receive federal grants. The sweeping and unprecedented changes it had telegraphed with its initial filing last year and reinvented Title IX only four years after substantial revision had occurred.

The purpose was to expand coverage, despite the clear wording of statute denying that, of nondiscriminatory classes, redefining “sex” to, among other things, “sexual orientation” and “gender identity.” It tried to justify this deviance by referring to a U.S. Supreme Court decision in an unrelated area of law, and almost certainly is unconstitutional for that overreach. Any attempt to deny funding for not following the rule if challenged would lead to the regulation’s overturn by the judiciary.


Shreveport voters face tough call on tax hikes

It’s a tough call this Saturday on Shreveport approving property tax hikes – necessary bromide or throwing good money after bad?

Across three proposals, the city plans to raise around $256 million for capital items. Almost half would go towards roads, streets, bridges, and surface and subsurface drainage systems (2.45 mills), while nearly a third would go to water and sewerage systems (1.6 mills), with the remainder going to public safety, buildings, and recreation (0.95 mills). Unlike measures to fund continuing government operations, the millages will vary depending upon bond issuance amounts and timings, with the city estimating 2027 would be the first year initial millages would be added to tax bills. Eventually, it predicts the total millage almost will double to close to 8 mills.

Regardless, success of any item at the polls will push Shreveport further into the category of the highest-taxed city without consolidated government in Louisiana. Republican current Mayor Tom Arceneaux’s predecessor Democrat Adrian Perkins three times attempted to have bond issues, around that neighborhood of a quarter-billion dollars give or take a few dozen millions, in various packages gain voter approval. His first attempt resulted in complete rejection at the polls, his second couldn’t get City Council assent, and in his third only one of five measures, about $71 million dedicated to public safety, passed voter muster.


For Bossier voters, "no" in quadruplicate

For different reasons, Bossier Parish voters should reject all four property tax renewals on Saturday’s ballot and tell the various powers-that-be to try again before it’s too late.

Bossier City has two such items on tap, both of which are identically dedicated to public safety operations and maintenance. Both are ten years in length starting in 2026, pitched at current levies (rolled back from previous authorized maximums, as property values have risen in recent years) of 8.32 and 2.71 mills that would generate about $8.6 million in annual revenue. These do not cover salaries, which are supplemented by a 5.98 mill measure approved at 6.19 mills in 2020.

The city was smarter this time around than back then. Four years ago, with that millage then set at 6.00, in essence it allowed for a future tax increase by the city asking for 6.19 and received negative publicity for that although the measure passed. Then as now, it occurred within a year of city elections; the next year the mayor and two city councilors got dumped by voters. So, this time the city pinned the renewals at the current rates, and hopes the assessment report from the parish that soon will be completed will show increased values and allow for a roll back later this year, just in time for elections next year.


Pass bill to rein in higher education subversion

Perhaps the most important bill under the radar in this year’s regular session of the Louisiana Legislature would rein in excesses against free expression in the state’s higher education system.

SB 486 by Republican state Sen. Alan Seabaugh would prohibit preferential treatment based upon race, color, ethnicity, national origin, political affiliation, or sex; discrimination in the recruitment or admission of students or in the recruitment or employment of employees; requiring as a condition of admission or employment that the applicant submit an ideological statement; promoting instruction that the moral character, racial attitudes, and responsibility or guilt for past group actions of an individual is determined by race, color, ethnicity, national origin, or sex; and would ban compelled expression contrary to a student’s personal political ideas or affiliation.

During a Senate Education Committee hearing last week, Seabaugh noted behaviors the bill would prevent at present occur at state institutions. Several examples he drew from Louisiana State University, despite a fake pullback from formal diversity, equity, and inclusion bureaucracies and information dissemination, moves publicized in leftist media. He emphasized that bureaucratic name changes and public removal of media that glorified what the bill would make illegal hadn’t stopped these practices behind the scenes.