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PAR Releases Free Online Citizen’s Guide to Louisiana Government

PAR Releases Free Online Citizen’s Guide to Louisiana Government

Posted: 09/22/2004

The Public Affairs Research Council of Louisiana (PAR) announced today the release of a free, updated online version of its guide to Louisiana government entitled, “Your Louisiana Government: An Owner’s Manual.” The 138-page manual, first published in 1998 and now updated to reflect changes through May 2004, was originally developed for use as a social studies textbook in schools. It also serves as a handy reference to Louisiana government both for citizens and newcomers to the state.

“Teachers and civic organizations alike will enjoy this up-to-date guide to Louisiana government,” said Jim Brandt, PAR President. “It provides a brief history of Louisiana as well as basic information on a number of key governmental topics, which are useful either in the classroom or for simply learning more about state and local government.”

The guide includes chapters on:

Louisiana politics;
the organization and operation of the legislative, executive and judicial branches of state government;
types and forms of local governments;
taxes; and
citizen involvement and access to government.
Internet links to a variety of national, state and local, departmental and agency Web sites also provide direct access to additional information about Louisiana, its state and local governments, and how the state compares nationally.

The guide is illustrated with colorful cartoons, charts, figures and tables. It also includes a glossary of key concepts, along with helpful sample discussion questions. Appendices provide additional information, including:

the Preamble and Article I of the Louisiana Constitution;
a list of parish seats, and
maps of:
the state’s supreme court districts;
courts of appeals circuits;
district courts judicial districts;
Senate and House of Representatives districts, and
population density (by census tract).
“We offer this guide to Louisiana as part of PAR’s mission to inform citizens of Louisiana about their state and local government,” said Brandt.

Readers can download an online (PDF) version of the guide, either by chapter or in its entirety, simply by logging on to Teachers are encouraged to make copies of all, or portions, of the text for use in the classroom. For additional information, write to PAR at P.O. Box 14776, Baton Rouge, LA 70898-4776, call (225) 926-8414 or visit PAR’s Web site at


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