Louisiana taxpayers receive more federal funding per dollar of federal taxes paid compared to the average state. Per dollar of federal tax collected in 2005, Louisiana citizens received approximately $1.78 in the way of federal spending. This ranks the state 4th highest nationally and represents a rise from 1995 when Louisiana received $1.35 per dollar of taxes in federal spending (ranked 7th nationally). Sony VAIO VGN-AW82YS Battery
Neighboring states and the amount of federal spending received per dollar of federal tax collected were: Texas ($0.94), Arkansas ($1.41), and Mississippi ($2.02). Federal spending in 2005 and subsequent years since has been exceptionally high due to the recovery from Hurricane Katrina.
Louisiana is rich in petroleum and natural gas. Sony VAIO VGN-AW83FS Battery
Petroleum and gas deposits are found in abundance both onshore and offshore in State-owned waters. In addition, vast petroleum and natural gas reserves are found offshore from Louisiana in the federally administered Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) in the Gulf of Mexico. According to the Energy Information Administration, the Gulf of Mexico OCS is the largest U.S. petroleum-producing region. Sony VAIO VGN-AW83GS Battery
Excluding the Gulf of Mexico OCS, Louisiana ranks fourth in petroleum production and is home to about 2 percent of total U.S. petroleum reserves. One third of the oil produced in the United States comes from offshore, and 80% of offshore production comes from deep water off Louisiana. Sony VAIO VGN-AW83HS Battery
The oil industry employs about 58,000 Louisiana residents and has created another 260,000 oil-related jobs, accounting for about 17% of all Louisiana jobs.
Louisiana's natural gas reserves account for about 5 percent of the U.S. total. The recent discovery of the Haynesville Shaleformation in parts of or all of Caddo, Bossier, Bienville, Sabine, De Soto, Red River, Sony VAIO VGN-AW90NS Battery
Sabine, and Natchitoches parishes have made it the world's fourth largest gas field with some wells initially producing over 25 million cubic feet of gas daily.Louisiana was the first site of petroleum drilling over water in the world, on Caddo Lake in the northwest corner of the state. The petroleum and gas industry, Sony VAIO VGN-AW90S Battery
as well as its subsidiary industries such as transport and refining, have dominated Louisiana's economy since the 1940s. Beginning in 1950, Louisiana was sued several times by the U.S. Interior Department, in efforts by the federal government to strip Louisiana of its submerged land property rights. These control vast stores of reservoirs of petroleum and natural gas. Sony VAIO VGN-AW90US Battery
When petroleum and gas boomed in the 1970s, so did Louisiana's economy. The Louisiana economy as well as its politics of the last half-century cannot be understood without thoroughly accounting for the influence of the petroleum and gas industries. Since the 1980s, these industries' headquarters have consolidated in Houston, Sony VAIO VGN-AW91CDS Battery
but many of the jobs that operate or provide logistical support to the U.S. Gulf of Mexico crude-oil-and-gas industry remained in Louisiana as of 2010.
In 1849, the state moved the capital from New Orleans to Baton Rouge. Donaldsonville, Opelousas, and Shreveport have briefly served as the seat of Louisiana state government. Sony VAIO VGN-AW91CJS Battery
The Louisiana State Capitol and the Louisiana Governor's Mansion are both located in Baton Rouge.
The current Louisiana governor is Bobby Jindal, the first Indian American to be elected governor. The current U.S. senators areMary Landrieu (Democrat) and David Vitter (Republican). Louisiana has seven congressional districts and is represented in theU.S. Sony VAIO VGN-AW91CYS Battery
House of Representatives by six Republicans and one Democrat. Louisiana will have eight votes in the Electoral College for the 2012 election after losing one House seat due to stagnant population growth in the 2010 Census.The Louisiana political and legal structure has maintained several elements from the times of French and Spanish governance. Sony VAIO VGN-AW91DS Battery
One is the use of the term "parish" (from the French: paroisse) in place of "county" for administrative subdivision. Another is the legal system of civil law based on French, German and Spanish legal codes and ultimately Roman law—as opposed to English common law. Common law is "judge-made" law based on precedent, and is the basis of statutes in all other U.S. states.Sony VAIO VGN-AW91JS Battery
Louisiana's type of civil law system is what the majority of nations in the world use, especially in Europe and its former colonies, excluding those that derive from the British Empire. However, it is incorrect to equate the Louisiana Civil Code with the Napoleonic Code. Although the Napoleonic Code strongly influenced Louisiana law, Sony VAIO VGN-AW91YS Battery
it was never in force in Louisiana, as it was enacted in 1804, after the Louisiana Purchase of 1803. While the Louisiana Civil Code of 1808 has been continuously revised and updated since its enactment, it is still considered the controlling authority in the state. Differences still exist between Louisianan civil law and the common law found in the other U.S. states. Sony VAIO VGN-AW92CDS Battery
While some of these differences have been bridged due to the strong influence of common law tradition,[dead link] it is important to note that the "civilian" tradition is still deeply rooted in most aspects of Louisiana private law. Thus property, contractual, business entities structure, much of civil procedure, and family law, Sony VAIO VGN-AW92CJS Battery
as well as some aspects of criminal law, are still mostly based on traditional Roman legal thinking. Model Codes, such as the Uniform Commercial Code, which are adopted by most states within the union including Louisiana, are based on civilian thought, the essence being that it is deductive, as opposed to the common law which is inductive. Sony VAIO VGN-AW92CYS Battery
In the civilian tradition the legislative body agrees a priori on the general principles to be followed. When a set of facts are brought before a judge, he deduces the court's ruling by comparing the facts of the individual case to the law.
In 1997, Louisiana became the first state to offer the option of a traditional marriage or a covenant marriage. Sony VAIO VGN-AW92DS Battery
In a covenant marriage, the couple waives their right to a "no-fault" divorce after six months of separation, which is available in a traditional marriage. To divorce under a covenant marriage, a couple must demonstrate cause. Marriages between ascendants and descendants and marriages between collaterals within the fourth degree Sony VAIO VGN-AW92JS Battery
(i.e., siblings, aunt and nephew, uncle and niece, first cousins) are prohibited. Same-sex marriages are prohibited. Louisiana is a community property state.
From 1898–1965, after Louisiana had effectively disfranchised African Americans and poor whites by provisions of a new constitution, it essentially was a one-party state dominated by elite white Democrats. Sony VAIO VGN-AW92YS Battery
The franchise for whites was expanded somewhat during the decades, but blacks remained essentially disfranchised until the Civil Rights Movement, culminating in passage of the Voting Rights Act of 1965. In multiple acts of resistance, blacks left the segregation, violence and oppression of the state to seek better opportunities in northern and western industrial cities during the Great Migrations of 1910–1970,Sony VAIO VGN-AW93FS Battery
markedly reducing their proportion of population in Louisiana. Since the 1960s, when civil rights legislation was passed under President Lyndon Johnson to protect voting and civil rights, most African Americans in the state have affiliated with the Democratic Party. Sony VAIO VGN-AW93GS Battery
In the same years, many white conservatives have moved to support Republican Party candidates in national and gubernatorial elections. David Vitter is the first Republican in Louisiana to be popularly elected as a U.S. Senator. The previous Republican Senator, John S. Harris, who took office in 1868, was chosen by the state legislature. Sony VAIO VGN-AW93HS Battery
Louisiana is unique among U.S. states in using a system for its state and local elections similar to that of modern France. All candidates, regardless of party affiliation, ran in a nonpartisan blanket primary (or "jungle primary") on Election Day. If no candidate had more than 50% of the vote, the two candidates with the highest vote total competed in a runoff election approximately one month later. Sony VAIO VGN-AW93ZFS Battery
This run-off did not take into account party identification; therefore, it was not uncommon for a Democrat to be in a runoff with a fellow Democrat or a Republican to be in a runoff with a fellow Republican. Congressional races have also been held under the jungle primary system. All other states (except Washington) Sony VAIO VGN-AW93ZGS Battery
use single-party primaries followed by a general election between party candidates, each conducted by either a plurality voting system or runoff voting, to elect Senators, Representatives, and statewide officials. Between 2008 and 2010, federal congressional elections were run under a closed primary system — limited to registered party members. Sony VAIO VGN-AW93ZHS Battery
However, upon the passage of House Bill 292, Louisiana once again adopted a nonpartisan blanket primary for its federal congressional elections.
Louisiana has seven seats in the U.S. House of Representatives, six of which are currently held by Republicans and one by a Democrat. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ11EN Battery
The state will lose a House seat at the end of the 112th Congress due to stagnant population growth enumerated by the 2010 United States Census. Louisiana is not classified as a "swing state" for future presidential elections, as it regularly supports Republican candidates.
Louisiana's statewide police force is the Louisiana State Police. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ11MN Battery
It began in 1922 from the creation of the Highway Commission. In 1927 a second branch, the Bureau of Criminal Investigations, was formed. In 1932 the State Highway Patrol was authorized to carry weapons.
On July 28, 1936 the two branches were consolidated to form The Louisiana Department of State Police and its motto became "courtesy, loyalty, service". Sony VAIO VGN-BZ11XN Battery
In 1942 this office was abolished and became a division of the Department of Public Safety called the Louisiana State Police. In 1988 the Criminal Investigation Bureau was reorganized. Its troopers have statewide jurisdiction with power to enforce all laws of the state, including city and parish ordinances. Each year, Sony VAIO VGN-BZ12VN Battery
they patrol over 12 million miles (20 million km) of roadway and arrest about 10,000 impaired drivers. The State Police are primarily a traffic enforcement agency, with other sections that delve in to trucking safety, narcotics enforcement and gaming oversight.
The sheriff in each parish is the chief law enforcement officer in the parish. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ12XN Battery
They are the keepers of the local parish prisons which house felony and misdemeanor prisoners. They are the primary criminal patrol and first responder agency in all matters criminal and civil. They are also the official tax collectors in each parish.
The sheriffs are responsible for general law enforcement in their respective parishes. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ31VT Battery
Orleans Parish is an exception, as there the general law enforcement duties fall to the New Orleans Police Department. Prior to 2010, Orleans parish was the only parish to have two (2) Sheriff's Offices. Orleans Parish divided Sheriff's duties between criminal and civil, with a different elected sheriff overseeing each aspect. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ31XT Battery
In 2006 a bill was passed which eventually consolidated the two sheriffs' departments into one parish Sheriff responsible for both civil and criminal matters.
Most parishes are governed by a Police Jury. Eighteen of the 64 parishes are governed under an alternative form of government under a Home Rule Charter. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ560 Battery
They oversee the parish budget and operate the parish maintenance services. This includes parish road maintenance and other rural services.Louisiana had the highest murder rate of any state in 2010 (11.2 murders per 100,000) which marked the 22nd consecutive year (1989–2010) that Louisiana has posted the highest per-capita murder rate of any U.S. state. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ560N24 Battery
Louisiana is also the only state with an average per capita murder rate (14.5 per 100,000) at least twice as high as the U.S. average (6.9 per 100,000) during that period according to Bureau of Justice Statistics from FBI Uniform Crime Reports. The Chicago Tribune reports that Louisiana is the most corrupt state in the United States. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ560N30 Battery
According the Times Picayune, Louisiana is the prison capital of the world, because of its many for-profit/Sheriff owned prisons. Louisiana's incarceration rate is nearly five times Iran's, 13 times China's and 20 times Germany's.Louisiana has over 9,000 Soldiers in the Louisiana Army National Guard including both the 225th Engineer Brigade and the 256th Infantry Brigade. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ560P Battery
Both these units have seen overseas service in either Iraq, Afghanistan, or both. The Louisiana Air National Guard has over 2,000 airmen and its 159th Fighter Squadron has likewise seen overseas service in combat theaters. Training sites include Camp Beauregard near Pineville, LA, Camp Villerie near Slidell, LA, Camp Minden nearMinden, Sony VAIO VGN-BZ560P20 Battery
LA, England Air Park (formerly England Air Force Base) near Alexandria, LA, Gillis Long Center near Carville, LA, and Jackson Barracks in New Orleans, LA.
Louisiana is nominally the least populous state with more than one major professional sports league franchise: Sony VAIO VGN-BZ560P22 Battery
the National Basketball Association's New Orleans Hornets and the National Football League's Super Bowl XLIV Champions New Orleans Saints. Louisiana has a AAA Minor League baseball team, the New Orleans Zephyrs. The Zephyrs are currently affiliated with the Miami Marlins.
Louisiana has 11 collegiate NCAA Division I programs, a high number given its population. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ560P28 Battery
The state has no Division II teams and only one Division III team.
The State of Louisiana in 2010 produced the most NFL players per capita for the second year in a row.
Louisiana is home to many, especially notable are the distinct culture of the Creoles and Cajuns. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ560P30 Battery
Creole culture is a cultural amalgamation that takes a little from each of the French, Spanish, African, and Native American cultures. The Creole culture is part of White Creoles' and Black Creoles' culture. Originally Créoles referred to native-born whites of French-Spanish descent. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ560P34 Battery
Later the term also referred to descendants of the white men's relationships with black women, many of whom were educated free people of color. Many of the wealthy white men had quasi-permanent relationships with women of color outside their marriages, and supported them as "placées". If a woman was enslaved at the beginning of the relationship, the man usually arranged for her manumission, as well as that of any of her children. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ561 Battery
Creoles became associated with the New Orleans area, where the elaborated arrangements flourished. Most wealthy planters had houses in town as well as at their plantations. Popular belief that a Creole is a mixed Black / French person came from the "Haitian" connotation of an African French person. There were many immigrants from Haiti to New Orleans after the Revolution. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ561N20 Battery
Although a Black Creole is one type of Creole, it is not the only type, nor the original meaning of Creole. All of the respective cultures of the groups that settled in southern Louisiana have been combined to make one "New Orleans" culture. The creative combination of cultures from these groups, along with Native American culture, was called "Creole" Culture. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ561P20 Battery
It has continued as one of the dominant social, economic and political cultures of Louisiana, along with Cajun culture, well into the 20th century.
Cajun Culture. The ancestors of Cajuns came from west central France to the provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, Canada, known as Acadia. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ562P Battery
When the British won the French and Indian War, the British forcibly separated families and evicted them because of their long-stated political neutrality. Most captured Acadians were placed in internment camps in England and the New England colonies for 10 to 30 years. Many of those who escaped the British remained in French Canada. Sony VAIO VGN-BZ563P Battery
Once freed by England, many scattered, some to France, Canada, Mexico, or the Falkland Islands. The majority found refuge in south Louisiana centered in the region around Lafayette and the LaFourche Bayou country. Until the 1970s, Cajuns were often considered lower-class citizens, with the term "Cajun" being somewhat derogatory. Sony VAIO VGN-BZAAFS Battery
Once flush with oil and gas riches, Cajun culture, food, music, and their infectious "joie de vivre" lifestyle quickly gained international acclaim.A third distinct culture in Louisiana is that of the Isleños, who are descendants of Spanish Canary Islanders who migrated from the Canary Islands of Spain to Louisiana under the Spanish crown beginning in the mid-1770s. Sony VAIO VGN-BZAAHS Battery
They settled in four main settlements, but many relocated to what is modern-day St. Bernard Parish, where the majority of the Isleño population is still concentrated. An annual festival called Fiesta celebrates the heritage of the Isleños. St Bernard Parish has an Isleños museum, cemetery and church, as well as many street names with Spanish words and Spanish surnames from this heritage. Sony VAIO VGN-BZAANS Battery
Isleño identity is an active concern in the New Orleans suburbs of St. Bernard Parish, LA. Some members of the Isleño community still speak Spanish – with their own Canary Islander accent. Numerous Isleño identity clubs and organizations, and many members of Isleños society keep contact with the Canary Islands of Spain. Sony VAIO VGN-BZAAPS Battery
Louisiana has a unique linguistic culture, owing to its French and Spanish heritage. According to the 2000 census, among persons five years old and older, 90.8% of Louisiana residents speak only English (99% total speak English) and 4.7% speak French at home (7% total speak French). Other minority languages are Spanish, which is spoken by 2.5% of the population; Sony VAIO VGN-CS118E/Q Battery
Vietnamese, by 0.6%; and German, by 0.2%. Although state law recognizes the usage of English and French in certain circumstances, the Louisiana State Constitution does not declare any "de jure official language or languages".Currently the "de facto administrative languages" of the Louisiana State Government are English and French. Sony VAIO VGN-CS118E/R Battery
There are several unique dialects of French, Creole, and English spoken in Louisiana. There are two unique dialects of theFrench language: Cajun French (predominant after the Great Upheaval of Acadians from Canada) and Colonial French. For the Creole language, there is Louisiana Creole French. Sony VAIO VGN-CS118E/W Battery
There are also two unique dialects of the English language: Cajun English, a French-influenced variety of English, and what is informally known as Yat, which resembles the New York City dialect, particularly that of historical Brooklyn, as both accents were influenced by large communities of immigrant Irish andItalian, but the Yat dialect was also influenced by French and Spanish. Sony VAIO VGN-CS11S/P Battery
Colonial French was the predominant language of Louisiana during the French colonial period and was spoken primarily by the white settlers; the black/creole population spoke mostly creole. Cajun French was only introduced in Louisiana after theGreat Upheaval of Acadians from Canada during 1710-1763. Sony VAIO VGN-CS11S/Q Battery
The Cajun people and culture (hence the Cajun language as well) did not appear immediately but was rather a slow evolution from the original Acadian culture with influences from local cultures. English and its associated dialects became predominant only after the Louisiana Purchase and even then it still retained some French influences as seen with Cajun English. Sony VAIO VGN-CS11S/W Battery
Cajun French and Colonial French have somewhat merged since English took over.
Renewed interest in the French language in Louisiana has led to the establishment of Canadian-modeled French immersion schools as well as bilingual signage in the historic French neighborhoods of New Orleans and Lafayette. Sony VAIO VGN-CS11Z/R Battery
Organizations such as CODOFIL promote the French language in the state.
The largest denominations by number of adherents in 2000 were the Roman Catholic Church with 1,382,603; Southern Baptist Convention with 868,587; and the United Methodist Church with 160,153.Sony VAIO VGN-CS120J/P Battery
Like other Southern states, the population of Louisiana is also made up of numerous Protestant denominations, comprising 60% of the state's adult population. Protestants are concentrated in the northern and central parts of the state and in the northern tier of the Florida Parishes. Sony VAIO VGN-CS120J/Q Battery
Because of French and Spanish heritage, whose descendants are Cajun and French Creole, and later Irish, Italian, Portuguese and German immigrants, there is a majority Roman Catholic population, particularly in the southern part of the state.
Since French Creoles were the first settlers, planters and leaders of the territory, they have traditionally been well represented in politics. Sony VAIO VGN-CS120J/R Battery
For instance, most of the early governors were French Creole Catholics. Because Catholics constitute a majority of Louisiana's population, Catholics have continued to be influential in state politics. As of 2008 both Senators and the Governor were Catholic. The high proportion and influence of the Catholic population makes Louisiana distinct among Southern states.Sony VAIO VGN-CS190JTB Battery
Jewish communities exist in the state's larger cities, notably Baton Rouge and New Orleans. The most significant of these is the Jewish community of the New Orleans area, with a pre-Katrina population of about 12,000. Sony VAIO VGN-CS190JTP Battery
The presence of a significant Jewish community well established by the early 20th century also made Louisiana unusual among Southern states, although South Carolina and Virginia also had influential populations in some of their major cities from the 18th and 19th centuries. Sony VAIO VGN-CS190JTQ Battery
Prominent Jews in Louisiana's political leadership have included Whig (later Democrat) Judah P. Benjamin (1811–1884), who represented Louisiana in the U.S. Senate prior to the American Civil War and then became the Confederate Secretary of State; Democrat Adolph Meyer (1842–1908), Confederate Armyofficer who represented the state in the U.S. Sony VAIO VGN-CS190JTR Battery