How to Request a Public Record from the Louisiana State Senate
The Louisiana Public Records Law, La. Const. Art. XII, §3 and R.S. 44:1-41, grants any person a right to examine and copy public documents in the possession of the state and
its political subdivisions, including the Louisiana Legislature.
The Secretary of the Senate, Yolanda Dixon, is the custodian of the records of the Senate.
All public records requests:
1. Must be in writing
Either through USPS or by e-mail to the Secretary (firstname.lastname@example.org
2. Must specify, to extent possible, the exact record(s) requested.
The Secretary is unable to make presumptions regarding your request or fill in any blanks
3. Must contain a return address, phone number, or e-mail contact.
After the Secretary receives the request, the records will be compiled and the charges computed and the requestor will be notified of the charges pending.
Copies of records costs $0.25 per page. This charge applies to electronic versions e-mailed to the requestor.
If the records are to be mailed to the requestor there will be a $5.00 charge for postage. All charges must be paid in advance of the records being supplied.
Payment should be made payable to the Louisiana Senate and mailed to, Post Office Box 94185, Baton Rouge, Louisiana 70804-4185 or hand-delivered to the Office
of the Secretary of the Senate, Senate Basement, State Capitol, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.
Upon receipt of the payment due, the records will be supplied.
1. No duty exists under law to create a record which is not otherwise created or maintained in the course of normal business of the Senate.
2. Neither the Senate nor the Louisiana Legislature are custodians of the following records: Acts of the Legislature (Secretary of State); statutes and codes of law
(public domain through your parish library); Governor's Executive Orders (Governor's Office); Governor's Proclamations (Governor's Office).
3. Some legislative records are privileged pursuant to La. Const. Art. III, Sec §8 and the Secretary is required to review all requested documents to ensure compliance with this provision of law.
4. The Secretary reserves the right to determine the method of record delivery as dictated by the volume of records requested and the form in which the original records exist.
Staff Assignments, Subject Area
Boards and Commissions
La. Senate Brochure
Veto Session Ballots
Yolanda Dixon, Secretary of the Senate
Yolanda Dixon was elected as Senate Secretary by the members January 13, 2020, after serving as First Assistant Secretary of the Senate since March, 2004. She advises the President, officers and members of the Senate on parliamentary procedures and Senate rules. She is the Chief Administrative Officer and Attorney for the Senate. She is the custodian of all records, proceedings and actions of the Senate. Yolanda previously served in the Senate as Senate Counsel, Director, and Deputy Director of the Judiciary and Government Division for Senate Legislative Services and as a staff attorney in the Louisiana Attorney General's Office. Yolanda is located in the State Capitol basement.
J.W. Wiley, First Assistant Secretary
Wiley was appointed First Assistant Secretary of the Senate in January 2020. J. W. began his career with the Senate in 2004 as the staff attorney to the Senate Committee on Natural Resources. He has also served as the staff attorney to the Senate Select Committee on Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness, Senate Counsel, and liaison to the Governor's Office of Homeland Security and Emergency Preparedness. In his role as the First Assistant Secretary he assists the Secretary in the performance of her duties, specifically confirmations to boards and commissions and in staffing the Legislative Bureau. J. W. is located in the State Capitol basement and can be reached by calling 225.342.2108.
Suzanne Guidry Morain, Second Assistant Secretary
Suzanne Guidry Morain was appointed Second Assistant Secretary of the Senate in 2012. Prior to this, she served as Senior Researcher for the Legislative Bureau and for the Select Committee on Coastal Erosion and Flood Control. Sue was later appointed Executive Assistant to the Secretary. She has been employed full-time with the Senate since 1989. Sue worked part-time in the office of the President from 1982 to 1989. She has a Bachelor of Science degree from Louisiana State University. Her main subject areas are Redistricting, IEB Ballots, Veto ballots, Rule book, Aid to Local Government, Session Aides and Pages, and the Bill Room. Sue is located in the State Capitol basement and can be reached by calling 225.342.2374.
Merrill LaPlante, Administrative Secretary to the Secretary
Merrill LaPlante has been employed with the Senate since 1984, having worked previously for the executive counsel in the governor's office. Before being assigned as Mrs. Dixon's secretary in 2005, she worked for the Senate Fiscal Division's director, staffing the Senate Finance and the Joint Legislative Budget committees, and the Revenue Estimating Conference. She has also worked directly for the Senate President. Merrill has a paralegal certification from Louisiana State University. She is located in the State Capitol basement and can be reached by calling 225.342.8898.
Caroline Guidry, Administrative Secretary to the First Assistant Secretary
Caroline Guidry has been employed with the Senate since 2018. Prior to receiving her Bachelor of Science degree from Louisiana State University, Caroline was employed with the Senate as a Page in 2007 and as a Head Page in 2011 and 2012. Caroline is located in the State Capitol basement and can be reached by calling 225.342.5597.
Marie Lively, Administrative Assistant to the First Assistant Secretary
Marie Lively has been employed full-time with the Senate since 1996. Prior to this she taught school and was employed by the Senate for legislative sessions. Her main subject areas are Boards and Commissions, and the Legislative Bureau. Marie is located on the second floor of the State Capitol and can be reached by calling 225.342.2189.
Gretchen Overbey, Endorsement Clerk
Gretchen Overbey has been employed full-time with the Senate since 2019. She is the Endorsement Clerk assigned to the Secretary of the Senate's Office. Gretchen retired as a teacher from the Baton Rouge Public Schools System. Since 1992, Gretchen has worked part-time with the Senate on the Desk Staff during the legislative sessions. Prior to that, she worked as a Head Page and a Computer Clerk during the legislative sessions. She received a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education at Louisiana State University. Gretchen is located on the 17th floor of the State Capitol and can be reached by calling 225.342.2378.
Sarai Stansberry, Administrative Secretary
Sarai Stansberry is an Administrative Secretary responsible for the Senate Journal and Legislative Calendar. She began working with the Senate as a Secretary assigned to the Senate and Governmental Affairs Committee in the Governmental Affairs Division. Prior to this, she worked as a Deputy Clerk for the 19th Judicial Preceding her time at District Court, while attending Xavier University of Louisiana she interned with the Department of Hazard and Mitigation in the City of New Orleans. Sarai is located in the State Capitol basement and can be reached by calling 225.342.8371.