BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — A proposal to loosen restrictions on employers who hire teenagers stalled in the Louisiana House.

Rep. Raymond Crews, a Bossier City Republican, proposed to increase the time a minor can work without a 30-minute break from five hours to eight hours. The idea was backed by the state's restaurant association.

Crews described his bill as increasing "opportunity for young adults." He said a parent must agree for a minor to have the job.

But Democrats bristled at the legislation, saying it prioritized the wants of employers over the needs of children who have school responsibilities.

Rep. Gary Carter, a New Orleans Democrat, called Crews' proposal a "bad bill."

Amid the criticism, Crews ended debate on the measure Monday. He can bring it up again.

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House Bill 64: www.legis.la.gov