House Education Committee Approves LSU Shreveport Commitment Plan Resolutions

The House Education Committee on Tuesday unanimously approved twin resolutions,calling for ongoing monitoring of the LSU Shreveport Commitment Plan aimed at providing additional degree and certificate programs at LSU Shreveport.

The resolutions—one a concurrent resolution to be submitted to both houses and the second a House-only resolution—by Rep. Thomas Carmody, R-Shreveport, “urges and requests” the LSU Board of Supervisors to provide written reports for the next three years to the Legislature, its education committees, and the Board of Regents on the implementation of the commitment plan, following the fall and spring semesters.

The resolutions follow the defeat of a separate measure by Carmody to merge LSU Shreveport with Louisiana Tech University in Ruston.

Carmody explained he would try to pass both resolutions in the event the concurrent resolution falters in the Senate.  He told committee members that the resolutions “would express the desire of both of our chambers.”

The Shreveport representative also praised LSU government relation’s personnel who he said had worked with him in crafting the language of both resolutions.

There was no opposition to either resolution, which drew support from lobbyists that had worked unsuccessfully to win approval of the merger bill.

Both resolutions now go to the House floor.

Two new programs are scheduled to begin this summer at LSU Shreveport—petroleum engineering and construction management. Those programs are among six new degree programs largely made possible by using LSU System’s resources, primarily the Flagship Campus in Baton Rouge. Other planned degree and certificate programs will have to go through the typical approval process, including approvals by the Board of Regents.

On a separate measure, the education committee approved a resolution by Rep. Joe Harrison of Gray, La., calling for a study of whether Louisiana’s public colleges should be grouped according to classification.

Harrison told committee he would like to see research universities such as LSU A&M and Louisiana Tech put in the Top Tier of state universities; regional universities in a second tier; and community colleges in a third as part of a move that Harrison said would make colleges “more effective and efficient.”

The resolution was approved by a vote of 10 to 6 and sent to the House floor.