Cutting TOPS while keeping able-bodied, childless adults on the welfare rolls? You're either serious about Louisiana's future or you're not.— John Neely Kennedy (@JohnKennedyLA) February 11, 2016
That Senate candidate is right. Justl ook at all these lazy legislators shirking responsibility and picking up their government checks.
The Louisiana House of Representatives put off voting on several tax bills -- including alcohol and cigarette tax hikes -- for the second time Monday (Feb. 29), including some measures that Gov. John Bel Edwards and Senate leadership consider essential to closing a $900 million budget deficit this year.Tick tock, guys. Whatever happened to that conservative work ethic and sense of fiscal rectitude y'all are so famous for? Republicans are supposed to be very serious about not running up big debts.
"What's going on? That's a good question," said Rep. Kenny Cox, D-Natchitoches, who pulled his two bills to raise alcohol taxes from the House agenda Monday. He said didn't have the votes to get them through yet.
The Louisiana Legislature only has until March 9 to solve the state's current financial crisis, and the House hasn't moved many of the potential tax increases that were discussed as solutions to the state's fiscal problem for the last few weeks. It also hasn't come up with enough cuts to solve the problem.
“We’re going to make some pretty significant cuts,” House Appropriations Chairman Cameron Henry, the Metairie Republican who sponsored the bill, told the Senate committee on Monday.Frankly, I didn't even realize they could do that given the way some of them talk. Why not roll the thing forward indefinitely? Sure that will make the ratings agencies nervous but if that happens, we can always just bill the Jindal campaign.
Henry faced a backlash when he suggested that the state could “roll forward” some of its shortfall to next year, as a way of delaying having to find a solution.
Henry explained that anything not covered through spending cuts or tax increases this year would move to the next year’s budget deficit, which is already $2 billion.
“That’s not an option,” state Sen. Eric LaFleur, D-Ville Platte, the committee chairman, told Henry. “That’s something we would not want to go home and tell anybody that we did.”