In local news:

Ava Dejoie, Executive Director of the Louisiana Workforce Commission, addressed misclassification and the Medical Director in a presentation in the Senate Labor and Industrial Relations Committee yesterday. In the portion of her discussion on workers’ comp, Dejoie emphasized the agency’s collaborative efforts to catch employers who misclassify employees in order to dodge workers’ comp premiums and taxes. She also touted the work of the new OWCA Medical Director, stating that the backlog of 450+ cases has been reduced by about half.

Senator Peacock followed up on the Medical Director question, asking for more details on the delays. Dejoie testified: “We had $800,000 swept from the Office in the final months of the last administration, so we were running a deficit. They had hired a doctor on January 5th or 8th to the tune of […] $225,000 a year. I had to make the decision of either closing a regional office, keeping the doctor onboard, or keeping the contracts of the three contract doctors we had for the six months that we did not have a doctor. I made the decision to keep one of those eight regional offices open, terminate that doctor at that time, and then see where we were in terms of our budget. When we were able to use some other funds to plug some holes, we brought a new doctor onboard.”

Watch the broadcast of the meeting here.

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