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Edwards issues vetoes, completes bill signings for 2021 Legislative Session

Louisiana State Capitol Building
Posted at 12:43 PM, Jul 02, 2021
and last updated 2021-07-02 17:11:57-04

Gov. John Bel Edwards announced that he has now acted on all legislation from the 2021 Regular Session.

Edwards has signed 477 bills into law and has vetoed 28 bills. He also says he limited the unnecessary waste of taxpayer dollars by using his line item authority to veto certain items in the budget and capital outlay bills.

“While much has been made of a handful of controversial bills, the reality is that this legislative session has produced many good laws that will improve the lives of Louisianans, including a balanced budget that strongly positions our state for the coming year and significantly invests in education, people and families,” Gov. Edwards said. “We did this through bipartisan cooperation and compromise. As we have proven time and time again, the people of Louisiana are best served when all of us put aside our differences and focus on projects, programs and progress for all.

“That’s how we’ve given pay raises to teachers, school support staff and professors. It’s how we’ve enacted protections for pregnant workers, made historic investments in higher education and created a new program to help more students attend community and technical colleges. It’s how we’ve enacted laws to face the problem of Title IX violations head on at Louisiana’s colleges and universities, advanced criminal justice reform, supported those affected by human trafficking and set our state up for continued economic recovery as we work to end the current pandemic."

The Governor has vetoed 28 bills from this session.

According to the Governor, all of these vetoed bills were simply unnecessary, and "many would have caused real harm to the people of Louisiana."

He states thatthe vetoed bills range from election bills that would have restricted access to the polls to legislation that would have discouraged the public’s confidence in the life-saving COVID-19 vaccines.

The bills vetoed by the Governor include Senate Bill 118 which would have removed training and permitting requirements to carry a concealed weapon and Senate Bill 156 which he says would have unfairly discriminated against transgender youth.

All of the Governor’s veto messages are linked below and will be transmitted to the Secretary of State today.

HB 2 Using his line-item veto authority, Gov. Edwards has vetoed portions of HB 2.

HB 26 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 26 because it addresses important severance tax matters regarding crude oil in a piecemeal fashion.

HB 38 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 38 because local school systems do not have the resources or technology to comply with this unfunded mandate.

HB 103 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 103 because it is not necessary; it contributes to false narrative that the COVID-19 vaccines are anything other than safe and effective; and it does nothing to protect the health and safety of the public.

HB 138 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 138 because the registrar of voters in every parish is already required to do an annual canvas of all registered voters under current law.

HB 148 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 148 because the bill author did not make a sufficient case of why this state sales tax exemption for the Edwards Via College of Osteopathic Medicine is necessary at this time.

HB 149 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 149 because it was the latest attempt by the Legislature to remedy the obvious and adjudged defects in the petition signed by some House of Representatives members last October attempting to terminate the COVID-19 public health emergency and did not sufficiently improve the vetoed bill from last year.

HB 256 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 256 because it limits the ability of certain school boards to enter into exclusive contracts, thus limiting the ability of those Boards to manage their business in the manner they see fit.

HB 263 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 263 because it would carve out an exception to the prohibition of a judge, magistrate, district attorney, or assistant district attorney being chosen to serve on a medical review panel for purposes of the review required for a medical malpractice lawsuit.

HB 289 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 289 because it creates a new state income and franchise tax credit for qualified railroad track repairs, maintenance, reconstruction, or replacement by Class II and Class III railroads, or short line railroads and only serves to exacerbate the state’s transportation funding dilemma.

HB 295 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 295 because it would eliminate the requirement that a certified copy of a death certificate be attached to the affidavit required to administer a small succession outside of probate.

HB 349 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 349 because it contributes to the false narrative that the COVID-19 vaccines are anything other than safe and incredibly effective.

HB 365 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 365 because it creates an inequitable distribution of net wagers on horse racing purses.

HB 438 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 438 because it could be used to delay responses to public records requests or intimidate members of the public into withdrawing their requests.

HB 498 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 498 because it attempts to undermine the public’s faith in the COVID-19 vaccines and change Louisiana’s approach to vaccine requirements for schools and educational facilities, which has been in place for decades without significant controversy.

HB 562 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 562 because, among other reasons, it is an infringement on the executive budget process.

HB 571 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 571 because it could allow alcohol delivery to college campuses, increasing access of alcohol to underage people, and also because it may infringe upon contracts legally signed by some Class B permit holders.

HB 597 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 597 because it would prevent state and local governments from complying with long-standing procurement laws and force them to accept financing at a higher interest rate than would otherwise be available in the market.

HB 698 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 698 because it risks non-compliance with the Internal Revenue Code, duplicates existing processes and calls for an unfunded mandate.

HB 704 Gov. Edwards has vetoed HB 704 because it unnecessarily politicizes the election process by inserting the state central committee of certain parties into the poll watching process.

SB 43 Gov Edwards has vetoed SB 43 because it is likely unconstitutional in that regulation of attorney advertising is handled by the Louisiana Supreme Court and not the legislature. A similar bill was vetoed last year.

SB 63 Gov. Edwards has vetoed SB 63 because it is unclear where an absentee ballot may be returned if hand delivered. It impedes access to voting, which is too important.

SB 118 Gov. Edwards has vetoed SB 118 because the current law as it stands strikes the perfect balance between public safety and ensuring the Second Amendment is upheld and allowing concealed carry without a permit would not be in the interest of public safety.

SB 145 Gov. Edwards has vetoed SB 145 because the bill falls short of fulfilling the purpose of providing a dedicated funding stream to enhance access to drug and specialty courts.

SB 156 Gov. Edwards has vetoed SB 156 because it unfairly targets children who are going through unique challenges and offers solutions to an issue that does not exist in Louisiana.

SB 203 Gov. Edwards has vetoed SB 203 because it creates a broad future exception to the ethics code for members of the Capital Area Groundwater commission.

SB 220 Gov. Edwards has vetoed SB 220 because this bill possesses separation of powers issues and adds an additional layer of bureaucracy to the elections process.

SB 224 Gov. Edwards has vetoed SB 224 because it would make the application to vote absentee by mail more stringent than what is currently required to actually vote absentee by mail.

The remaining bills have been signed and will be submitted to the Secretary of State today. Remaining act numbers will be provided in a future press release.

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