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CADDO PARISH FILES SUIT TO CHALLENGE STATE’S EMERGENCY MEETING LAW PROVISIONS
Caddo Parish, LA – The Parish of Caddo has filed a lawsuit challenging the provisions of part of the act that regulates the meetings of governing bodies in Louisiana during emergencies. Louisiana Revised Statute 42:17.1, is part of Act 302, which strictly limits the items that can be placed on a governing body’s electronic meeting agenda during a declared emergency.
The Parish argues that if it becomes unsafe to meet in person again during the pandemic or in a future emergency, the Parish should be able to address any matter of business electronically that they would ordinarily address in an in-person meeting.
“We believe that home rule charter parishes’ governing bodies should have an exclusive right to set their own agendas, particularly with all of the safeguards put in place for public participation in electronic meetings,” said Caddo Parish Attorney Donna Frazier. “Electronic meetings with no limitation items were shown to work well before the passage of Act 302,” said Frazier.
The Caddo Parish Commission voted 10-2 to direct the Parish Attorney’s office to file suit. In response to Act 302, the Caddo Parish Commission is currently meeting in person for the duration of Phase 3.