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Now is the time for real openness and transparency when private lawyers are hired by the Attorney General to work for Louisiana taxpayers. This practice should not be done behind closed doors, as it is now.
With the coming expansion in the energy, manufacturing, and construction sectors and an aging population, Louisiana’s impending labor shortfall can only be exacerbated by excluding a large section of the prospective workforce: ex-offenders.
The nation’s older inmate population is expected to increase exponentially again over the next decade, with associated health costs spiraling higher.
Conservative states like Texas and Georgia have taken steps to steer nonviolent offenders away from prison, emphasize rehabilitation over jail time, and reduce penalties for many drug and property crimes.
The Louisiana Legislature kicked off the 2014 regular session last week, beginning a series of discussions about the most important issues facing the state. Already it is clear that lawsuit reform will be front and center in the debate.