Senate Blocks Former Lawmaker Tapped By Edwards For Board
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Former lawmaker Jeff Arnold won't be making decisions about property tax breaks for businesses on the state board that oversees such things, after senators refused to confirm him for the position.
On the final day of the regular legislative session this week, the Senate rejected seven appointments to boards and commissions made by Gov. John Bel Edwards, including Arnold's nomination to the Board of Commerce and Industry.
Arnold, a Democrat from New Orleans, was forced out of the Louisiana House earlier this year because of term limits and ran unsuccessfully for a Senate seat.
Discussion of the confirmations is done in secret. Senators vote on the package of appointees in one list, with usually no public debate about those jettisoned or approved.
The Senate has a tradition of refusing to accept board and commission appointees if one senator objects in the closed-door discussions, so as little as one legislative objection could have kept Arnold from gaining confirmation.
Sen. Troy Carter, who defeated Arnold, wouldn't say Wednesday whether he blocked Arnold's confirmation.
"There's a lengthy process, and he went through the process and he didn't make it through," said Carter, D-New Orleans.
Also rejected by the Senate for a position on a New Orleans-area flood protection board was Metairie lawyer Jack Capella, who is president of Georges Enterprises, which owns The Advocate newspaper.
Edwards spokesman Richard Carbo said two of the seven appointments rejected by the Senate didn't get their confirmation paperwork in on time, including choices for the state mineral board and the New Orleans Center for Creative Arts board.
Others not getting confirmation include picks for an elections supervisory board, a law enforcement commission and the state racing commission. Dozens of the governor's selections for cabinet secretaries and other board and commission slots were approved by the Senate in the Monday vote on the appointment list.
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