Community college students have the greatest level of need, but they receive the least resources and they’re increasingly pressed but tend to get overlooked in media accounts of funding arguments that instead focus on exclusive schools with a much more affluent client base.

For his initial pitch on legislation aimed at curtailing oil and gas activity at Lake Peigneur, state Sen. Fred Mills turned the Senate chamber into a movie theater. Mills, R-St. Martinville, showed grainy, decades-old news footage of the water draining in a violent whirlpool after a drilling accident in 1980. The images failed to convince the state Senate to embrace Mills’ Senate Bill 200 to stop the expansion of natural gas storage underneath the lake. … He [Mills] asked legislators to side with the lake’s residents instead of the dozen lobbyists hired by the “oil and gas boys.”

For those who have not seen it, here is video of the 1980 drilling disaster in Lake Peigneur.

The proposed legislation creates a clear path for getting new chemicals on the market, while protecting trade secrets and intellectual property. It also allows for regulation of chemicals that are now off-limits to regulators — mainly those introduced before 1976 when the Toxic Substances Control Act was enacted.

Under the compromise, all active chemicals in commerce must be evaluated for safety and labeled as either “high” or “low” priority based on the potential risk to human health and the environment. It imposes tighter scrutiny for the higher-risk chemicals.

It mandates that the regulatory process be done with transparency, something Vitter said is missing from many current Environmental Protection Agency regulatory systems.

Mark Moseley

Mark Moseley blogs at Your Right Hand Thief. Until mid 2014, Mark Moseley was The Lens' opinion writer, engagement specialist and coordinator for the Charter Schools Reporting Corps. After Katrina and...