House budget hearings begin with uncertainty about cuts
BATON ROUGE - Lawmakers in the House have opened their hearings on next year's budget, while Gov. John Bel Edwards' administration is still working to cut another $70 million this year.
Commissioner of Administration Jay Dardenne told the House Appropriations Committee the governor will unveil the reductions to rebalance this year's budget later this week. The cuts will have to be made before June 30.
Because the Edwards administration is still grappling with this year's budget, Dardenne says he couldn't lay out Monday what cuts will look like in the fiscal year that begins July 1.
The state is short $750 million to continue all programs and services, even after lawmakers passed $1.2 billion in tax hikes. Dardenne says most agencies will face what he described as "painful" cuts of about 30 percent.