Louisiana State Senate
|Louisiana State Senate|
|Term limits:||3 terms (12 years)|
|2014 session start:||March 12, 2012|
|Website:||Official Senate Page|
|Senate President:||Joel Chaisson, (D)|
| Democratic Party (17) |
Republican Party (22)
|Length of term:||4 years|
|Authority:||Art III, Section 3, Louisiana Constitution|
|Last Election:||November 7, 2007 (39 seats)|
|Next election:||November 19, 2011 (39 seats)|
|Redistricting:||Louisiana legislature has control|
Article III of the Louisiana Constitution establishes when the Louisiana State Legislature, of which the Senate is a part, is to be in session. Section 2 of Article III states that, in even-numbered years, the Legislature shall convene on the last Monday in March and meet for no more than sixty legislative days during a period of eighty-five calendar days. In odd-numbered years, the Legislature is to convene on the last Monday in April and meet for no more than forty-five legislative days during a period of sixty calendar days. During regular sessions in odd-numbered years, the Legislature can only consider measures regarding the state budget, revenues, and appropriations.
Section 2 of Article III also allows the Legislature to be called into a special session by the Governor of Louisiana or by a majority of the members of each legislative house. During special sessions, the Legislature can only legislate on matters related to the proclaimed purposes of the session.
Section 2 of Article III also authorizes the Governor of Louisiana to call an emergency session without prior notice in the event of a public emergency.
- See also: Dates of 2011 state legislative sessions
In 2011, the Senate will be in regular session from April 25 through June 23. The Legislature was in a special session regarding the census and redistricting from March 20-April 15. 
- See also: Dates of 2010 state legislative sessions
In 2010, the Senate was in session from March 29th to June 21st. 
Louisiana is one of only four states that hold state elections in odd-numbered years. Clerk of the Louisiana House Alfred "Butch Speer explains why:
For scores of years we conducted our party primaries in the winter of the odd numbered years, with any necessary 2d primary held in January. Because Republican voter registration was so miniscule from 1877 until 1980, the general elections were mere irritants to the Democrat primary victor. Once we scrapped the partisan primary system  we set the entire system up to run in the fall of the odd numbered year, our traditional election season.
- See also: Louisiana State Senate elections, 2011
As of the 2000 Census, each of Louisiana's 39 state senators represents an average population of 1114,589 people. In 2007, the candidates for state senate raised a total of $18,266,324 in campaign contributions.
|Year||Number of candidates||Total contributions|
The top 10 donors were:
|Leach Jr., Claude (Buddy)||$293,669|
|Senate Democratic Campaign Cmte of Louisiana||$249,598|
|Leach, Claude Buddy||$237,000|
|Louisiana Republican Party||$230,380|
|Quinn, Patrick & Julie||$230,000|
|John A. Alario, Jr.||$200,000|
|Louisiana Republican Legislative Delegation Campaign Cmte||$185,000|
|Louisiana Association of Business & Industry||$174,344|
In order to run for office, the following qualifications are in place:
- Must be 18 years of age or older.
- Must be a resident of the district they seek to hold office to for a minimum of two years.
- Must not have served more than two and one half terms previously in office. This is for any candidate who has held office in the past after January 8, 1996.
- Have not been convicted of a felony offense.
- Have no outstanding fines with the Louisiana Ethics Administration Program.
- Pay a $225 filing fee with the Clerk of Court in the parish they reside in or collect 400 signatures.
- If running as a Republican or Democrat, pay an additional $112.50 filing fee with the state and/or parish executive committee of their party.
| How Vacancies are filled in State Legislatures |
If there is a vacancy in the Senate, the vacant seat must be filled by a special election. An election is required if there is six months or more left in the unexpired term. The Senate President must call for an election no later than 10 days after the vacancy happened. The Senate President must determine the dates for the election along with all filing deadlines. The person elected to the seat serves for the remainder of the unexpired term.
- See also: State legislatures with term limits
The Louisiana legislature is one of 15 state legislatures with term limits. Of the 15 states, it is the only state where term limits were imposed by the state's legislators, rather than through the ballot initiative process. Under Louisiana's term limits, state senators can serve no more than three 4-year terms in the senate.
- See also: Partisan composition of state senates
|Party||As of April 2014|
The President and President Pro Tempore of the Senate are elected by the full body, needing at least 20 votes for confirmation. The President is the presiding officer of the body, whose duties include preserving order, calling votes, appointing/removing members of each Senate and conference committee, and approving all expenditures of the Senate. In the absence of the President, the President Pro Tempore assumes all duties of the position.
|President of the Senate||Joel Chaisson||Democratic|
|President Pro Tempore||Sharon Weston Broome||Democratic|
|Senate Republican Chairman||Daniel Martiny||Republican|
- See also: Comparison of state legislative salaries
As of 2011, members of the Louisiana legislature are paid $16,800/year. Additionally, legislators receive $6,000/year for expenses and $152/day per diem tied to the federal rate.
The $16,800/year that Louisiana legislators are paid as of 2011 is the same as they were paid during legislative sessions in 2007. Per diem has increased from $138/day in 2007 to $152/day in 2011.
When sworn in
Louisiana legislators assume office at noon on the second Monday in January after their election.
List of Current Members
Standing Senate Committees
There are a total of seventeen standing committees in the Louisiana Senate. These committees are comprised of seven members with the exception of two committees: Finance Committee and Revenue and Fiscal Affairs Committee, have eleven each. It is under the discretion of the Senate President to appoint and remove members of a committee.
- Agriculture, Forestry, Aquaculture, and Rural Development Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Commerce, Consumer Protection, and International Affairs Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Education Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Environmental Quality Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Finance Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Health & Welfare Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Insurance Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Judiciary A Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Judiciary B Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Judiciary C Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Labor & Industrial Relations Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Local & Municipal Affairs Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Natural Resources Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Retirement Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Revenue & Fiscal Affairs Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Senate & Governmental Affairs Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Transportation, Highways & Public Works Committee, Louisiana State Senate
- Official website of the Louisiana State Senate
- Official list of Louisiana State Senators
- Louisiana State Senate on Wikipedia
- Project Vote Smart profile of Louisiana Senate
- Population in 2010 of the American states
- Population in 2000 of the American states
- StateNet, Daily Session Summary, 4 March 2011
- 2010 session dates for Louisiana Legislature
- The Thicket, "Why do Four States Have Odd-Year Elections?," August 25, 2011
- Follow the Money: "Louisiana Senate 2007 Campaign Contributions"
- Louisiana Secretary of State "Candidate Qualifications"
- Louisiana Secretary of State "Candidate Qualification Form"
- Louisiana Secretary of State "Filing Fees"
- Louisiana Legislature "Louisiana Election Code"(Referenced Statute 18:601, Louisiana Statutes)
- Louisiana term constraints
- State legislative term limits
- Senate Rules of Order - Chapter 3: Officers
- National Conference of State Legislatures, "2011 Legislator Compensation Data"
- Empire Center, "Legislative Salaries Per State as of 2007"
State of Louisiana
Baton Rouge (capital)
|State executive officers||
Governor | Lieutenant Governor | Attorney General | Secretary of State | State Treasurer | Superintendent of Education | Commissioner of Insurance | Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry | Secretary of Natural Resources | Executive Director of the Workforce Commission | Chairman of Public Service Commission |