Edwards' budget would leave TOPS short, trim most agencies
BATON ROUGE - Fresh off a special session to close a deficit, Gov. John Bel Edwards' administration is looking ahead to next year's budget.
The governor's top financial adviser unveiled to lawmakers Thursday the administration's $29 billion-plus operating budget proposal for the financial year that begins July 1.
The proposal would trim most agencies' spending, leave the TOPS college program unable to cover full tuition costs and have hospitals facing some cuts.
Spending would rise, with most of the increase federal dollars in Louisiana's Medicaid program. Medicaid enrollment has grown through the expansion program.
Commissioner of Administration Jay Dardenne identified $440 million in additional spending the governor would like, if Louisiana has more money than currently expected.
Release of Edwards' budget proposal kicks off negotiations for the legislative session that begins in April.