Lawmakers wait to hear from auditors on surplus
BATON ROUGE - Lawmakers have sidestepped a decision on whether they accept claims from Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration that the state closed last year's books with a nearly $179 million surplus.
The Legislature's joint budget committee took no action Friday on the surplus figure, instead waiting to let their auditors comb through the numbers. The Legislative Auditor's Office doesn't expect to have its review completed until the end of December.
Barry Dusse, director of the governor's Office of Planning and Budget, presented the surplus figure to the committee. The Jindal administration says it identified millions that hadn't been calculated over several years.
Treasurer John Kennedy says the method strays from Louisiana's traditional accounting practices, which would show the state with a nearly $141 million deficit from the budget year that ended June 30.