Governor Landry Declared a State of Emergency Over a Deputy Shortage

AP Photo/Evan Vucci

Louisiana Governor Jeff Landry declared a state of emergency over a deputy shortage across the state. Landry promised a tough-on-crime agenda and the newly elected Republican is looking to make good on that promise.


The declaration of a state emergency allows sheriffs to immediately hire more deputies. It also increases payrolls to highlight the deputy shortage. 

Landry suspended a law that bans "political payroll padding." For decades, the law prevented sheriffs from hiring large numbers of people ahead of an election to use them for campaign activities. 

The law also prohibits sheriffs from hiring over 5% of their workforce, increasing payroll by more than 15%, or selling more than 10% of their assets for six months after a new gubernatorial term begins. 

The executive order suspends the law until next month.

The temporary suspension of the law will help smaller, rural sheriff offices

Shannon Dirmann, counsel to the Sheriffs Association, said the move will help smaller, rural sheriffs offices without a large number of deputies to hire people now instead of waiting until July. She also said the association told sheriffs they shouldn't issue "across-the-board pay increases or other unrelated expenditures." 

"To qualify for the emergency exception under the statute, expenditures have to be necessary to address the emergency which is solely the law enforcement personnel shortage and the need to fill vacant deputy sheriff positions," Dirmann said.

A special session of the Louisiana Legislature began on Monday. At the top of the governor's agenda are big changes to the criminal justice system. A bill that failed last legislative session that would open up juvenile cases and records for teens arrested for violent crimes has a spot on the governor's list of agenda items. 


Landry was inaugurated in January. He flipped Louisiana's governor's office from Democrat to Republican. Previous to being elected governor, Landry served as Louisiana attorney general. 

In Landry's executive order, he outlined two dozen focus areas for legislators in the year's second special session.  

In the order, Landry outlined two dozen focus areas for legislators, including stricter parole standards, tougher penalties for carjackings, an expansion of execution methods for death row inmates, and dropping penalties for carrying a concealed weapon without a permit.

 Landry also hopes to reverse the decades-long precedent of shielding juvenile records and lowering age limits for when a person can be tried as an adult.

You go, Governor Landry. 

Landry calls for criminals to serve more time in prison. That's a double-edged sword. It's good for the communities and their residents to keep convicted criminals off the streets. However, taxpayers pay the price for longer incarcerations. The prison population will grow and that means taxpayers foot bigger bills to keep them in prison. 

In 2017, then-Governor John Bel Edwards, a Democrat, pushed through criminal justice reform that focused on reducing prison populations. Those reforms saved the state $153M due to the prison population decrease. The money saved was diverted to a victim reparations program, the juvenile justice system, and programs meant to reduce recidivism. 


State lawmakers are expecting details of Troop NOLA during this special session. This is a new force of Louisiana State Police troopers expected to be stationed in New Orleans.

American cities are still feeling the effects of the 2020 Summer of Love and the Defund the Police movement. It's no wonder a city like New Orleans is experiencing a shortage of law enforcement officers. Who would want to serve in this kind of political environment? Police officers are demonized by leftists. New Orleans crime stats have not been good in recent years. Let's hope Governor Landry can get New Orleans and the rest of the state back on track. Public safety first.

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