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GOP lawmakers in House strike at state government contracts

10 months 3 weeks 5 days ago February 22, 2016 Feb 22, 2016 Monday, February 22 2016 February 22, 2016 1:50 PM in News
Source: Associated Press

BATON ROUGE - Republicans in the Louisiana House have started shaping their response to state budget problems, taking aim at consulting and professional services contracts.

The Appropriations Committee backed bills Monday that would force state contract cuts and require more reporting before deals are struck.

The measures, which head to the full House for debate, are part of GOP lawmakers' efforts to slash government spending more deeply than Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards proposes.

Edwards has called for $160 million in cuts by June 30 and is asking lawmakers gathered in a special session to raise taxes to help stabilize the budget.

Republicans, particularly in the House, say they want deeper reductions.

But financial analysts suggest the contract changes won't generate sizable savings to help close an immediate budget gap topping $850 million.

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