State Rep. Jerome "Dee" Richard, I-Thibodaux, tells Gambit that he plans to submit a formal petition, some time in the next few days, calling for a special legislative session on hundreds of millions in budget cuts recently proposed or enacted by Gov. Bobby Jindal. In a phone interview this morning, Richard said the petition could go out tomorrow, though early next week is more likely.
“It’s probably going to go out on Monday," Richard said.
Last week, Richard sent an email to constituents and fellow legislators calling for the session. Read more at Louisiana Voice.
"Since our adjournment in June, there has been almost a billion dollars in reductions to the state budget without any input from the Legislature. And thanks to some media outlets we are now learning of still more cuts to healthcare without any input from the Legislature," the email reads. "I believe it is time for us, as Legislators, to aggressively reinsert ourselves into the budget process by using the Constitutional rights given to us. We should not have to relinquish our legislative duties to the administration once we pass the budget at the end of regular session in times like this."
(More after the jump)
State law requires signatures of one-third of the members of each house (35 representatives and 13 senators) for the petition to even be considered and mailed out to all legislators, and he believes he is close to reaching that mark.
“I have a sense but I don’t have it in writing," he said. “I think we can get the 35 House members ... We’re kind of half and half sure that we’re going to get the 13 in the Senate. But we’re going to concentrate on the House first.”
For the session to actually take place, though, Richard will need to get a majority to sign the petition.