- Associated Press - Saturday, June 6, 2015

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Local public school districts should have more freedom to choose their textbooks, both the House and Senate have decided.

House Bill 287 by Rep. Gene Reynolds, D-Minden, would let local districts decide which books and materials should be used in classrooms.

The state education department would review instructional materials in English, math, science and social studies to decide whether they meet state educational standards. But local districts wouldn’t be bound by its approved list.

“It allows local school boards to have a much greater voice in the selection of these things,” said Sen. Gerald Long, R-Winnfield.

The education department would be required to post online the textbooks and instructional materials it reviews and to help with bulk purchasing to get deals.

The Senate voted 37-0 for the measure Friday. It goes back to the House for approval of Senate changes to the bill. The House earlier voted unanimously for the proposal.


Drivers for rideshare services like Uber and Lyft will have to carry hefty insurance policies, under a bill headed to the governor’s desk.

Rideshare services connect contract drivers, who frequently use their personal cars, with passengers through a smartphone app. These providers have drawn scrutiny in cities around the U.S. where they operate, often because of safety issues that arise from the lack of regulation.

Under Senate Bill 172 by Sen. Dan “Blade” Morrish, R-Jennings, drivers will be required to carry a $1 million minimum insurance policy when shuttling passengers. The insurance requirements take effect Jan. 1.

The proposal won final legislative passage with a unanimous Senate vote Saturday.



Louisiana Legislature: www.legis.la.gov

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