Today is being called D-Day or even the Drop Dead Day when referring to the Louisiana legislative special session being held in Baton Rouge. Conventional wisdom is, if things don’t really jumpstart now, you can kiss the revenue raising session goodbye.
Roughly 11 days ago, Governor John Bel Edwards first gaveled in the fiscal session, to fix what was considered by many, a roughly 600 to 1 billion dollar hole in the budget for the year 2018, starting July 1. However, the session has literally gone nowhere.
Will the Louisiana Legislature Humpty Dumpty be able to be put back again?
The Legislative session, which has been up and running now for the past ten days, or so, has fallen off of the wall. Some might believe the fiscal session never got off the ground onto the wall, at all.
We know there is a swamp in Washington DC that President Trump promised to drain although some might argue that the only things that have changed are the critters that habituating it. But, other than our Bayous, does the State Capitol in Baton Rouge own its own swamps too?
Is Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards ready to be a hero? Is he willing and ready to take the reins, be a leader, pull a “Nixon goes to China” and get the Louisiana budget on a secure and stable process?
These are the basic thrusts of the comments articulated by Rob Maness earlier this morning as he discussed with me, the Louisiana legislative session via Facebook and Twitter Live.
What’s going to happen with the popular tuition program for Louisiana university students, called TOPS? Will any part of the penny sales tax that was passed as a temporary measure two years ago remain on the books? Back then, the legislature, facing a nearly one-billion dollar shortfall that needed to be made up in a matter of three months, arising from the Governor Bobby Jindal administration budget meltdown worsened by lower oil prices, opted for a single penny sales tax that will sunset later this year.
On Monday, Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards addressed the legislature and the state in opening another special session to try to plug a fiscal hole.
Today, Bayoubuzz launched its first segment of its daily, twice per day segment discussing the legislative session, "Bayoubuzz Live: Louisiana Legislature", streamed to Facebook and Twitter.
It’s not so much whether Louisiana’s House of Representative’s Republican delegation can unite to address immediate fiscal concerns, but whether some faction of it will defect to hand Louisianans a big tax bill for the foreseeable future.
The Louisiana legislative fiscal session starts today, is scheduled for no more than 17 days. A week later, the regular session begins. For the first time ever, session watchers will be able to watch live streamed legislature information on Facebook and Twitter and on Bayoubuzz.com.
So, let the olympic-sized Louisiana legislative fiscal debate match begin!
On Monday, the Louisiana legislature convenes at the state Capitol for another special fiscal session to make an attempt to fix, what we might call, the always-existing revenue hole fiscal cliff.
by Tom Aswell, Publisher of LouisianaVoice.com
(First published on the Louisiana Voice)
Gov. John Bel Edwards and the Louisiana Legislature could probably learn a thing or two about building budgetary surpluses from the St. Landry Parish Fire Protection District No. 2—except at least one St. Landry Parish citizens thinks the surplus may be the result of smoke and mirrors and a little voodoo tax millage assessment.