When Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne endorsed John Bel Edwards for governor, it rang the cronyism alarm with many experts waiting to see what Dardenne would get out of the deal. It is now final: he will serve as the commissioner of the Division of Administration — the main budget chief for the state.
This blog points out that Bobby Jindal had a good idea once: everybody pays income tax. Jindal's plan was to set the minimum at 2 percent. Sounds good. But, what about Louisiana? With our economy, how do you pay income tax when you have no job because the governor was out running for president instead of running the state?
Here's a look at unemployment in Louisiana's nine metro areas during the last month. It is good news for seven - especially Lake Charles which has the third best percentage of jobs increases in the country thanks to construction projects. Those seven have seen drops in unemployment. The Lafayette metro area - including Lafayette, St. Martin, Iberia and Vermilion parishes - is not among those seven. Instead, our job decline - some 4,300 jobs in the last year - ranks as the worst in the nation. Other than eating at Darrell's and Dairy Barn, this has to be the first time Lafayette peeps should be jealous of Lake Charles peeps. Maybe it has something to do with the price of oil?
With John Bel Edwards looking to expand Medicaid on day 1 (or so), state senators are already warming to the idea. They asked the health department to draw up a proposal for doing just that and have it ready for Edwards. Not only does this bode well for those who need it, it bodes well for politics in Louisiana: these leges are showing a willingness to work across the aisle.
The Heisman nominees are out and Leonard Fournette isn't on the list. Might it have something to do with that three-game losing streak or him getting shut down against 'Bama or the two losses that saw him rush for about 50 yards below his average? Still, he led the nation with 158 yards a game. I guess this Heisman thing is about hot right now, not hot a month-or-so ago. A sophomore, there is always next year (which is the mantra for Louisiana football fans these days anyway).
Brandon Browner is costing the Saints big numbers in flags and burnt coverage on the field ... and in the pocket book. This Times-Pic piece looks at the cost of cutting him. There are a few options, but they all involve paying his base salary next year - $2.75 million. But here's the real conundrum: why did we sign him to such a deal when almost all his his numbers were on the decline and, in his career, he leads the league in flags? Yes, leads as in not just this year but his whole flagging career.