Jun 6, 2011 10:00 AM by Lauren Wilson & AP
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - One of Gov. Bobby Jindal's key financial intiatives, the proposed sale of three Louisiana prisons, gets its first legislative hearing.
The House Appropriations Committee is scheduled to hear the bill Monday after months of public debate since the governor proposed the idea as a way to drum up cash for next year's budget.
Jindal staff spent the weekend trying to sway lawmakers. House leaders have predicted the proposal will have a rough time winning support in committee and an even harder time getting the backing of the full House.
Jindal pitches the idea as a way to save money, arguing private companies could run the prisons more cheaply. Critics question if the sale would damage public safety and boost state costs in a few years when the contract costs rise.