Panel backs law
on using headlights

A state Senate panel on Thursday quickly endorsed legislation that would require motorists to turn their headlights on when they drive through tunnels.

“A lot of seniors are having problems” as they navigate a tunnel in Houma, said state Rep. Jerry “Truck” Gisclair, D-Larose. Those seniors prompted him to file House Bill 162, he said.

Other tunnels where the lights-on policy would be initiated are located in Belle Chasse and Harvey.

Violators could be fined not more than $25. The offense would not be considered a moving violation.

The Senate Transportation Committee advanced the bill to the Senate floor for debate.

Discrimination ban in state jobs killed

A proposal to ban discrimination in state employment based on a worker’s sexual orientation or gender identity failed to win approval Thursday in a Senate committee.

Senate Bill 100 by state Sen. Ed Murray, D-New Orleans, was rejected in a 4-1 vote by the Senate Labor Committee.

The conservative Louisiana Family Forum and Gov. Bobby Jindal opposed the measure.

Seat-belt rule
for SUVs advances

Drivers as well as their passengers in sports utility vehicles would be required to wear seat belts under a bill that sailed out of a Senate committee Thursday.

State Rep. Henry Burns, R-Haughton, said his House Bill 197 just adds “a new class of vehicle” to the seat belt requirements of existing law.

The bill now heads to the Senate floor for consideration.

Compiled by

the Capitol news bureau

and The Associated Press