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Public Policy & Advocacy

  • February 15, 2023 2:38 AM | Shelly Dupre (Administrator)

    There are currently 27 bills filed on the House side - HB4 - HB 27. HB1-HB3 are designated as appropriation bills. So far, nine bills have been filed on the Senate side. The majority of the pre-filed bills to date pertain specifically to taxes. Click here to keep up with pre-filed bills.

  • February 15, 2023 2:36 AM | Shelly Dupre (Administrator)

    The United States Department of Agriculture Food and Nutrition Service (USDA FNS) has announced February 2023 is the final month of the temporary extra Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits, known as emergency allotments, put in place at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. The recent passage of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023, ends these benefits. Although Louisiana's Public Health Emergency Order ended in March 2022, Governor John Bel Edwards signed Executive Order JBE 2022-10, which allowed the Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) to continue issuing Emergency Allotments through February 2023, making it one of just 28 states to do so.

  • February 15, 2023 2:29 AM | Shelly Dupre (Administrator)

    The Biden Administration recently announced that the President will end the public health and national emergencies on May 11. The announcement of an event months from now is designed to allow the public and people in all levels of governments time to prepare. Among other things, the end of the public health emergency may mean that people have to start paying for COVID-19 testing and treatment, and it could affect employer-sponsored health insurance, COBRA, and flexible spending accounts. Read more here.

  • February 01, 2023 12:14 PM | Shelly Dupre (Administrator)

    LABI (Louisiana Association of Business & Industry) announced plans this week for LA23, “a bold initiative to position Louisiana as an economic leader in the South by 2030, crafted through extensive research and a vetting process with a broad array of stakeholders.” According to LABI’s press release, the mission of LA23 is to define and articulate key issues that face the people and businesses of Louisiana. It is a strategic plan and 8-year vision, but with specific near-term milestones to provide informed policy guidance for candidates in the fall 2023 elections.

    Throughout February and March, LABI will host regional listening sessions throughout the state to share current research, key concepts and solicit input from businesses and Louisianans. The second round of listening sessions will be held this summer. They are also sending surveys out statewide for the broadest level of input possible. LA23 will be released in late summer or early fall of this year. 

    We know the vital role that charitable nonprofits play in communities across Louisiana. We will forward more information on the upcoming regional listening sessions and surveys as your organization, board members and other stakeholders' participation are important to charitable nonprofits being included in Louisiana’s economic success.

    To learn more about LA23, click HERE


  • February 01, 2023 12:09 PM | Shelly Dupre (Administrator)

    Two major candidates who might join the Louisiana governor’s race said they still aren’t ready to announce whether they are launching a campaign. Congressman Garret Graves, R-Baton Rouge, said he hasn’t made up his mind yet over whether he will run for governor. Louisiana Transportation Secretary Shawn Wilson, a Democrat, said he will make an announcement “sooner rather than later” about whether he is launching a campaign.

    The race already has four declared Republican candidates: Attorney General Jeff Landry, State Treasurer John Schroder, state Sen. Sharon Hewitt, R-Slidell, and state Rep. Richard Nelson, R-Mandeville. Lake Charles businessman Hunter Lundy has said he will run as a political independent.

    After U.S. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., announced that Graves is going to be chair of the Elected Leadership Committee, was given a spot on the House Republican Steering Committee, and (McCarthy) made an appearance at Washington Mardi Gras, folks thought that Graves would keep his D.C. digs, but he hasn’t confirmed one way or another. It’s likely polls are in the field and we’ll know more in the next few weeks.

    Source: The Daily Comet

  • February 01, 2023 12:06 PM | Shelly Dupre (Administrator)

    Senators Royce Duplessis and Caleb Kleinpeter were officially sworn in this week. Senator Duplessis, a former state representative, won in a special election after former Senator Karen Carter Peterson resigned last year. Because he is filling the final year of Peterson’s seat, Duplessis will have to run for re-election this year in Senate District 5.

    Caleb Seth Kleinpeter, a first-term West Baton Rouge Parish councilman, won a seat previously held by a fellow parish resident, former Senator Rick Ward. Kleinpeter, a Republican from Brusly, defeated state Rep. Jeremy LaCombe, D-New Roads, and Dr. Kirk Rousset, a Republican from Oscar. Kleinpeter is a pipeline technician with Enterprise Pipeline who served combat tours in Iraq and Afghanistan with the U.S. Marine Corps. Ward relinquished the seat after he accepted a job in the private sector.

  • January 18, 2023 6:23 AM | Anonymous

    Buckle up and hold onto your hats because election season is starting to really heat up, and there will be plenty of twists and turns and deal making between now and November. As of now, those on the right side of the aisle announcing their intent to run for Governor include Treasurer John Schroder, Attorney General Jeff Landry, State Senator Sharon Hewitt. State Representative Richard Nelson is also expected to announce soon in addition to a possible surprise announcement by Congressman Garret Graves. 

    On the left side of the aisle, Democratic Party Chair Katie Bernhardt is seriously considering throwing her hat in, and Transportation Secretary Shawn Wilson’s name has also been mentioned as a well-known and possible contender. East Baton Rouge District Attorney Hillar Moore also stated that he’s considering the top spot.

    The only Independent in the race so far is Lake Charles attorney Hunter Lundy who announced his candidacy months ago.

    La. R.S. § 24:56 states that “No fundraising function shall be held during a regular legislative session for or by a legislator unless written notice of the function has been given to the board not less than thirty days prior to the function.” The 2023 Regular Legislative Session will convene at noon on Monday, April 10, 2023 and adjourn no later than 6:00 pm on Thursday, June 8, 2023; therefore, current legislators have had to start making decisions if they intend to jump into Fall races¾particularly the top spot where Attorney General Jeff Landry already has a hefty piggy bank compared to the other candidates mentioned who have announced and even those who are still mulling it over.

  • January 18, 2023 6:23 AM | Anonymous
    Last week, the Internal Revenue Service issued a notice raising the standard business mileage rate to 65.5 cents per mile for 2023 (up from 62.5 cents per mile for the last six months of 2022). Many nonprofits use this rate when reimbursing their employees for work-related driving. The volunteer mileage rate – the amount that is tax-deductible when your nonprofit's volunteers drive on behalf of your organization – remains at 14 cents per mile and can only be changed by Congress.
  • January 18, 2023 6:22 AM | Anonymous

    In addition to funding the federal government, the 4,155-page omnibus bill makes a variety of other changes to federal laws. Two of these changes could affect personnel policies for some nonprofits:

    1. The Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, which the Senate added to the omnibus bill, requires employers, including nonprofits, with 15 or more employees to provide pregnant workers with reasonable accommodations like additional bathroom breaks or not having to carry heavy objects unless these accommodations would impose undue burdens on the employers. This law takes effect on June 27.
    2. The PUMP for Nursing Mothers Act, which was also added to the omnibus bill in the Senate, requires employers, including nonprofits, with 50 or more employees, to provide reasonable break time for employees who are nursing mothers to express milk. It also requires employers with 50 or more employees to provide a place other than a bathroom where employees who are nursing mothers can express milk “that is shielded from view and free from intrusion from coworkers and the public.” The PUMP for Nursing Mothers Act took effect last Thursday when the omnibus bill was signed into law.

    If your nonprofit has 15 or more employees, you may need to revise your personnel policies to ensure that you are complying with these new laws. Smaller nonprofits can also include these accommodations for pregnant or nursing employees in their personnel policies even though they are not legally required to do so.

  • January 18, 2023 6:22 AM | Anonymous

    President Joe Biden recently signed into law a $1.7 trillion omnibus spending bill (H.R. 2617) to fund the federal government through the remainder of the fiscal year (through September 30). Unfortunately, the omnibus spending bill does not restore the universal charitable deduction and two other incentives for charitable giving that expired at the end of 2021, nor does it retroactively restore the Employee Retention Tax Credit, which had expired after the third quarter of 2021. It also doesn’t reinstate the enhanced child tax credit, which had led to record-low child poverty levels last year and which also expired at the end of 2021.

    On a positive note, the omnibus spending bill does include several spending increases that will benefit many nonprofits, including a 30% increase in funding for the Child Care and Development Block Grant, increased funding for the Community Development Block Grant and the Homeless Assistance Grants, and significant new investment in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program. The bill also spends $15 billion on 7,200 earmarks to local governments and nonprofits around the country. 

    To help your organization better understand the implications of the omnibus spending bill for charitable nonprofits, the National Council of Nonprofits has provided a helpful two-page summary of highlights and lowlights in the bill for nonprofits.

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