Legislation that would further restrict clinics from performing abortions is scheduled to be considered by a legislative committee Wednesday.
House Committee on Health and Welfare, which convenes at 10:30 a.m., will consider but one of the controversial issues up before the Louisiana Legislature on Wednesday. The House Education Committee also will take up legislation related to Common Core standards.
Adding to what promises to be the busiest day thus far in the 2014 General Session, a group of developmentally disabled will rally on the State Capitol steps for a constitutional amendment that would protect their programs from losing funding.
House Bill 388 by state Rep. Katrina Jackson, D-Monroe, would require physician who performs pregnancy terminations to have admitting privileges at a hospital that provides obstetrical or gynecological health care services and is located no more than 30 miles away from where the abortion is to take place.
Supporters say the legislation would make the procedure more safe.
Opponents counter that provision is unnecessary because women who get abortions rarely require hospitalization. Rural clinics would no longer be able to perform abortions because OB-GYN services are usually only found in larger cities.
Six other states are considering similar bills. For instance, Oklahoma’s House passed a similar measure in February and action awaits in that state’s Senate.
House and Senate committees on Wednesday are set to consider the first bills that touch on Common Core, the new academic standards in math, reading and writing that have sparked controversy.
The House Education Committee’s agenda includes three bills on student data privacy, which critics say would be jepordized by the Common Core tests.
The key proposal for review is House Bill 946 by state Rep. John Schroder, R-Covington.
Others listed are House Bill 560 by Rep. Barry Ivey, R-Central and House Bill 555 by Rep. Cameron Henry, R-Metairie.
The Senate Education Committee is set to hear Senate Bill 449 by Senate Education Committee Chairman Conrad Appel, R-Metairie, another student privacy measure.
Advocates for the developmentally disabled are expected to be on the State Capitol steps for a 1 p.m. rally concerning the “need to protect services for vulnerable populations.”
A rally organizer Kay Marcel said hundreds of people from all over the state are expected to participate, including different ARCs and member of LaCAN, the Louisiana Citizens Action Network.
State Sen. Fred Mills, R-New Iberia, who has a proposed constitutional amendment to protect fundng for programs such as home and community based services for the developmentally disabled, is scheduled to speak.