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Governor: $300M deficit could trigger special session need

4 months 2 weeks 21 hours ago January 06, 2017 Jan 6, 2017 Friday, January 06 2017 January 06, 2017 5:49 PM in News
Source: Associated Press

BATON ROUGE - Gov. John Bel Edwards is suggesting a special budget-rebalancing legislative session may be likely to close a looming midyear deficit.

The size of the gap will be decided next week. The Democratic governor said Friday if the deficit reaches $300 million or more, as has been projected, he believes a special session would be needed.

House Republican leaders, however, hope to avoid such a session. House Speaker Taylor Barras says he'd prefer the governor and the Legislature's budget committees to slash spending on their own.

Louisiana's governor and lawmakers are limited on where they can make cuts when a midyear budget gap emerges.

Edwards says if the deficit reaches $300 million, a special session would give lawmakers more flexibility to cut across agencies, to spread the pain of the reductions.

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