because the storms shuttered businesses.
"I want to continue to work this issue," Barfield told a joint
meeting of the House and Senate labor committees.
He said he's already been told by federal labor department
officials that Louisiana wouldn't be able to get that waiver for
the stimulus money spending period. But when lawmakers asked if
he'd gotten that refusal in writing, Barfield said he would press
for clarification in writing and would ask higher level labor
officials about the possibility for a waiver.
The unemployment money from the stimulus has caused a partisan
split at the state Capitol. GOP lawmakers have supported Jindal, a
Republican, on his stance while Democratic lawmakers said they will
push to override him.
Rep. Karen Carter Peterson, D-New Orleans, questioned why the
Jindal administration would decide to reject the unemployment money
if the Louisiana Workforce Commission hadn't yet received formal
clarifications from federal labor officials on whether the state
could avoid causing a tax increase on businesses.
"Why would make recommendations without facts? ... Each state
is still getting guidance, letters, and then you can make an
informed decision," she said.