2023 Elections Hub

November 18 Election Results

On November 18, Louisianans returned to the polls to vote in runoff elections and on four proposed Constitutional Amendments.

October 14 Election Results

On October 14, citizens across the state cast their votes for Louisiana’s governor, lieutenant governor, other statewide officals, state legislators, BESE members, and various constitutional amendments. Many races were decided outright, while other will head to a runoff

Lafayette Parish voters also weighed in on our community’s next Mayor-President, members of the City and Parish Councils, members of the Lafayette Parish School Board, and various other parish leadership roles.

Upcoming Election Dates

Be informed ahead of the November 18 election!
General Election: November 18
Early Voting: November 3 – 11

1A Candidate Conversations – A Video Series

As the chamber of commerce for Lafayette, 1A wants our community to be informed going into the polls, so we are sitting down and interviewing candidates for local offices in Lafayette Parish.


Ballot Guides

State Government
On October 14, citizens across the state will cast their votes for Louisiana’s governor, lieutenant governor, other statewide officials, state legislators, BESE members, and various constitutional amendments, with runoffs taking place in November. With all state offices and legislative seats on the ballot, decisions made in the 2023 elections will shape the economic future of Louisiana.


Local Government
Lafayette Parish voters will also decide on our community’s next Mayor-President, members of the City and Parish Councils, members of the Lafayette Parish School Board, and various other parish leadership roles.


Elections Programming

As the fall elections approach, 1A and partners are hosting opportunities for Acadiana’s business community to engage with candidates and hear their views on key issues facing our community, as well as learn more about the Constitutional Amendments on the October and November ballots.

  • Energize the Vote Acadiana Reception
    Thursday, September 14, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m.
    Warehouse 535
  • Lafayette Mayor-President Forum
    Wednesday, September 27, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m.
    Acadiana Center for the Arts
  • PAR Louisiana Webinar: 2023 Constitutional Amendments Explained
    Wednesday, October 4, 12:00 p.m.

Elections Around the Region

Greater Iberia Chamber of Commerce Political Forums 2023
The Greater Iberia Chamber of Commerce hosted candidate forums on August 29 & 30, to hear from candidates for Iberia Parish Council and state legislative office.

Vermilion Chamber of Commerce Candidate Questionnaires
The Vermilion Chamber of Commerce has conducted a written Q&A with candidates for the following: BESE District 7, State Representative Districts 31 and 49, Vermilion Parish Sheriff, Vermilion Parish Clerk of Court, and Vermilion Parish Policy Jury.

1A Policy Priorities

As the voice of the regional business community, 1A communicates our organization’s public policy positions to Acadiana’s elected officials at the local, state, and federal levels, providing a unified voice on behalf of the 600 businesses and individuals we represent. During election seasons, 1A also works to ensure candidates for public office understand our region’s most critical policy issues. In our Public Policy Agenda (PPA), we comprehensively outline our positions on policy issues we regard as vital to the success and prosperity of the Acadiana region, focusing on economic development, workforce & education, infrastructure, urban revitalization & development, and more.

Here are a few positions we would like to highlight ahead of the upcoming elections:


Louisiana Economic Development (LED)

Louisiana’s pro-growth business environment is supported by a system of economic development programs that have spurred unprecedented levels of private investment in the state. To maintain and advance industry-based competitiveness and sustain Acadiana’s economic growth for the future, 1A supports protecting, strengthening, and – when appropriate – streamlining key economic development incentives proven to generate return on public investment, including:

Staff – Maintain strong executive leadership and financial support for LED to sustain a high-caliber professional staff, which is necessary to lead national and international marketing and lead development, site development activities, customized workforce solutions, and strategic research and analysis

LED FastStart – In 2022, LED FastStart was rated the #1 state workforce development program in the nation for the 13th consecutive year. Program staff work with companies to create workforce programs tailored to their specific immediate and future personnel needs, then recruit and prepare high-quality workers for employment. LED FastStart is critically important to economic development efforts in Acadiana, and 1A urges state leaders to ensure FastStart has the resources needed to maintain its top national ranking.

State Investment – 1A encourages continued state investment in economic development at the regional and local level. This includes programs that bolster regional economic development efforts to promote business retention & expansion and market to outside businesses and talent, as well as grant programs that help address workforce challenges across Louisiana. This also includes recurring funding for the LA Competes site development program, established in 2022. Additionally, LED should be empowered to negotiate discretionary incentive packages with high-potential prospects with consistent financial support and follow-through from the Governor and Legislature


I-49 South

1A urges the Legislature to protect the recently-enacted policy that dedicates 60% of vehicle sales tax revenues to infrastructure construction, and in particular, the portion of that funding being directed to the new Megaprojects Leverage Fund for I-49 South.

The I-49 Lafayette Connector is a 5.5-mile segment of the larger I-49 South project, spanning from I-10 to Lafayette Regional Airport. 1A will continue to work with public officials like the Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development (DOTD) to support approval and protection of the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (SEIS) and a construction timeline that keeps the project moving toward completion.

Economic Development Incentives

Louisiana’s pro-growth business environment is supported by a system of economic development programs that have spurred unprecedented levels of private investment in the state. To maintain and advance industry-based competitiveness and sustain Acadiana’s economic growth for the future, 1A supports protecting, strengthening, and – when appropriate – streamlining key economic development incentives proven to generate return on public investment, including:

Angel Investor Tax Credit – Encourages investment in small, early stage, wealth-creating Louisiana businesses seeking start-up and expansion capital by providing a 25% tax credit on investments by accredited investors, or an enhanced tax credit of 35% if the business is in a qualified Opportunity Zone.

Digital Interactive Media and Software Development Incentive – Supports innovation and success of digital media and software development companies by providing a 25% tax credit on qualified payroll and an 18% tax credit on qualified production expenditures.

Industrial Tax Exemption Program (ITEP) – Supports manufacturers who make a commitment to jobs and payroll in the state by providing an 80% property tax abatement on a manufacturer’s qualifying capital investment related to the manufacturing process in the state.

Quality Jobs (QJ) – Supports companies, in eligible industries, that foster economic development and create well-paying jobs by providing a 6% cash rebate on gross annual payroll for new direct jobs, as well as a rebate of either state sales & use taxes on capital expenditures or 1.5% of project facility expenses.

Research and Development (R&D) Tax Credit – Encourages businesses already operating in Louisiana to establish or continue research and development in the state by providing a 30% tax credit on qualified research expenditures.

Adult Learner Reenrollment

More than half of working-age adults (age 25-64) in Louisiana – approximately 1.2 million adults – hold a high school diploma or less as their highest level of education. In other words, most of Louisiana’s working-age population is not equipped for the majority of jobs in the 21st century economy. 1A supports innovative approaches to re-engaging these adults, particularly the 21.3% of Louisiana’s adults (650,000+) with some college but no degree, to reenroll and earn a degree or other credential of value.

M.J. Foster Promise Program – In 2021, the Legislature created the M.J. Foster Promise Program to provide financial support for Louisiana adults to earn credentials that align with high-demand jobs in industries like construction, healthcare, information technology, and manufacturing. 1A supports efforts to improve access to the M.J. Foster Promise Program so even more adult learners can benefit.

Compete LA  1A supports the University of Louisiana System’s “Compete LA” initiative, which offers a variety of online degree programs and convenient class structures for adults with some college credit, along with personal coaches to help students navigate the process from re-enrollment through degree completion.

#FreeTheTranscript – Student debt is a major barrier to adult student reenrollment and degree completion, as an outstanding balance may lead to registration and transcript holds until the debt has been repaid. 1A supports efforts to ease pathways to reenrollment and degree completion, such as prohibiting postsecondary institutions from withholding academic transcripts due to outstanding debt with the institution.

State Budget & State Reform

State Budget Reform
In recent years, Louisiana has had the luxury of budget surpluses, thanks to federal pandemic aid and higher than expected tax collections. A falloff in revenues to the State General Fund awaits next term, however, when a 0.45% temporary sales tax expires and the majority of vehicle sales tax revenues becomes dedicated to road and bridge construction. Looking ahead, 1A supports a balanced approach to stabilizing Louisiana’s budget and working toward long-term fiscal sustainability. A balanced approach will require cost-containing measures and budget reforms while maintaining essential funding for key priorities like pre-K-12 and higher education, healthcare, and transportation infrastructure.

State Tax Reform
According to the Tax Foundation, Louisiana has one of the lowest state-local tax burdens in the country. At the same time, Louisiana has one of the least competitive business tax climates. This is due to the complexity of our tax structure, which relies on higher tax rates to compensate for a narrower tax base resulting from a proliferation of exemptions, deductions, exclusions, and credits. 1A urges our legislators to adopt policies that promote a growth-oriented tax system that is fair, easy to comply with, and competitive with other states. To achieve a simpler, more competitive tax code, we support the principle of broadening our tax base and lowering our tax rates. A great example that 1A supported was Constitutional Amendment No. 2 of 2021, which eliminated the distortionary Federal Income Tax (FIT) deduction in exchange for reductions in the personal income, corporate income, and franchise tax rates. The Wall Street Journal editorial board called this policy change “Louisiana’s tax reform breakthrough.”

Lafayette Mayor-President and Councils

Acadiana's Urban Core

Every region has a physical center that serves as a focal point for residents and visitors alike, and the quality of a region’s brand is defined heavily by the quality of its core. In addition to being a quality of life asset, the core is a primary measuring stick for how our region stacks up against other places. Our regional core – including the areas around Downtown Lafayette and UL Lafayette – is experiencing renewal and growth, with significant new investments underway or announced, and it will be important to keep building on this momentum.

Revitalizing Acadiana’s urban core will attract and sustain business and economic activity – generating more tax revenue without raising tax rates – and will diversify housing options that respond to evolving market preferences. We must drive the journey to revitalize our region’s core such that we provide an urban experience that is attractive to emerging generations of young professionals, along with companies seeking attractive amenities for their location and expansion. That’s why fostering vibrancy in Acadiana’s urban core is one of the key pillars of the Vibrant Acadiana initiative. This work is well underway, through the Lafayette Comprehensive Plan, Downtown Action Plan, Oil Center Redevelopment Plan, UL Master Plan, and Bike Lafayette Plan. Much of our region’s long-term success depends on rallying around these plans to ensure their steady implementation.

Gateway Corridors

Improving the condition of key gateway corridors – particularly the Evangeline Thruway and the University Avenue corridor – will give visitors, prospective new businesses, and residents all a more positive impression of our community and will demonstrate a civic pride of place that complements our rich cultural identity. To that end, 1A supports the implementation of the University Avenue Corridor Plan and the Evangeline Corridor Initiative Plan and the investment of significant public funding with priorities identified in these plans. Dramatic improvements in our community’s key gateway corridors will enhance quality of life for our residents, positively influence the way visitors perceive our community and region, and support increased economic development and talent attraction for our area.

Downtown Lafayette and UL Lafayette Connectivity

Echoing the results of previous studies, one of the takeaways from 1A’s Leadership Exchange trip to Pensacola is the importance of improving connectivity between Downtown Lafayette and UL Lafayette. A recent study counted several thousand daily pedestrian crossings of Johnston Street at its intersection with St. Mary Blvd, with foot traffic certain to increase with the development of UL’s new health science campus at the former Our Lady of Lourdes site. Lafayette Consolidated Government (LCG) is planning street design improvements to make Johnston Street and Congress Street more bike and pedestrian friendly adjacent to Downtown. 1A supports these improvements, as well as additional connectivity improvements that make Downtown Lafayette and UL Lafayette more safe and accessible for bicyclists and pedestrians. Strengthening the connection between UL Lafayette and Downtown Lafayette will also have many economic benefits, including continuing to grow Downtown’s burgeoning retail and restaurant scene and better connecting UL students with quality of life amenities.

Lafayette Mayor-President and Councils

K-12 Governance

With the passage of Act 1 in 2012, Louisiana made a bold choice to provide district and school leaders with more authority to manage schools. The law has curbed the ability of school boards to interfere in the day-to-day operations of schools, limiting their influence in the hiring and firing process. Additionally, it has required employment-related decisions to be based on performance, effectiveness, and qualifications, rather than seniority. These reform measures are grounded in national best practices and a “what-works” approach. 1A believes Louisiana should protect policies that empower superintendents, principals, and other school leaders with management discretion. At the local school board level, 1A believes the most important responsibility of a school board is to hire an effective superintendent whom they evaluate and hold accountable for results.

K-12 Career Development

1A supports efforts to strengthen career and technical education (CTE) and other programs that prepare K-12 students for high-wage, high-demand jobs.

Jump Start – 1A supports robust region-wide implementation of the Jump Start initiative, Louisiana’s innovative CTE program that requires students in the program to attain industry-promulgated, industry-valued credentials while in high school.

STEM initiatives – 1A supports legislative and local district efforts to increase graduates in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) disciplines to meet the ever-growing needs of employers. We also support efforts to increase the participation of women and other underrepresented populations in STEM programs.

Dual enrollment – 1A supports increasing access to dual enrollment courses across the region. Dual enrollment allows students to earn postsecondary credit while still in high school, strengthening preparation for college and career.

Work-based learning – 1A supports efforts to increase work-based learning opportunities, such as paid internships and apprenticeships, that are aligned with high-demand jobs.


André Breaux
VP, Policy Initiatives & Governmental Affairs

Keely McGibboney
Director, Policy Initiatives & Governmental Affairs