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Legislative Report – May 17, 1984

Louisiana: The State We're In



Genre: Newsmagazine

Place Covered: Baton Rouge, East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana

Copyright Holder: Louisiana Educational Television Authority

Date Issued: 1984-05-17

Duration: 00:24:55

Subjects: Louisiana Legislative Session, 1984 | Politics | Teacher pay raises | Evolution | Louisiana. Legislature | Government | Professional Improvement Program | Colson, Charles W. | Education | Science | CREATIONISM


  • Johnson, Ken Host
  • Ekings, Robyn Host
  • Reilly, Kevin, Sr. Interviewee
  • Williams, Rita Interviewee
  • Davis, Mona Speaker
  • Colson, Charles Speaker
  • Keith, Bill Speaker
  • Nelson, Sydney Speaker
  • Buell, Duncan Speaker
  • Savage, William Interviewee
  • Dastugue, Quentin Interviewee
  • O'Neal, B.F. Interviewee


This episode of the series “Louisiana: The State We’re In” from May 17, 1984, features Ken Johnson and Robyn Ekings hosting a daily legislative report on the 1984 Regular Session of the Louisiana Legislature. Johnson first reports on the day’s headlines. These stories include: Governor Edwin Edwards’ plan to fund teacher and state employee pay raises; an interview with State Representative Kevin Reilly, the chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, on the difficulty in getting rid of tax exemptions; an interview with Rita Williams, a lobbyist for the Louisiana Association of Educators (LAE), on the issue of teacher pay raises; Mona Davis, an aide to Governor Edwards, testifying in favor of repealing the Professional Improvement Program (PIPS) for teachers; and Charles Colson, a Watergate co-conspirator and the founder of Prison Fellowship, addressing a joint session of the Legislature. Next, Ekings reports on the efforts to repeal the state’s 1981 scientific creationism law. Ekings reports that the law requires the teaching of creation science in equal time with the theory of evolution in public schools and that the law has not been enacted due to a lawsuit challenging its constitutionality. Her report includes: highlights of a rally led by State Senator Bill Keith in 1981 in support of the law; State Senator Sydney Nelson and Duncan Buell of the ACLU testifying in favor of repealing the law; and an interview with William Savage of the Louisiana Federation of Teachers. Lastly, Johnson and Ekings conduct an in-studio interview with State Representatives Quentin Dastugue and B.F. O’Neal. They discuss the proposed repeal of the scientific creationism law.