Today, Gov. John Bel Edwards applauded the passage of a budget agreement in the Louisiana House of Representatives. The budget compromise will fully fund higher education for the first time in a decade, fully fund TOPS, honors our commitment to our veterans and continues a practice started by the administration in the current fiscal year where a portion of agency funding will be withheld to address any possible mid-year shortfalls.
“This budget represents an overall compromise,” said Gov. Edwards. “While it still imposes cuts across state government, it does so in a responsible way that adequately funds our needs without negatively impacting the most vulnerable among us. This budget also continues a practice that my administration began this fiscal year, whereby funds are set aside in reserves from state agencies to address possible cuts throughout the fiscal year. Equally important, this budget contains no new taxes. It is a responsible spending plan that reverses years of mismanagement and for the first time in a decade, offers some stability to our state. I appreciate the House’s work with us on this bill, and I look forward to swift passage in the Louisiana Senate.”
In the current fiscal year, Gov. Edwards asked agencies to withhold a portion of their budgets in an effort to address mid-year cuts. When the time came in the fall of 2016 to eliminate the shortfall, agencies that were already having cash flow issues due to the floods, were able to dip into these savings to eliminate the deficit, without the need for new revenue or deep cuts. Under the current proposal, the governor and commissioner of administration will develop a plan to withhold possible funds should they be needed this fiscal year.