Louisiana House passes $28 billion-plus budget
BATON ROUGE - With the narrowest vote, lawmakers in the Louisiana House spurned their GOP leaders and backed a $28 billion-plus operating budget that would use every dollar forecast to be available for spending.
The vote was a blow to House Republican leaders who wanted to withhold $100 million from the spending bill, in anticipation that Louisiana's income predictions are too optimistic.
The House decision was a victory for Gov. John Bel Edwards.
“This budget represents an overall compromise,” said Gov. Edwards. “While it still imposes cuts across state government, it does so in a responsible way that adequately funds our needs without negatively impacting the most vulnerable among us.
Fifty-six House members, including rank-and-file Republicans who voted with Democrats, agreed Wednesday to a spending plan that looks largely like a version previously supported by state senators. It takes 53 votes for a bill to pass.
House GOP leaders' refusal to take up that Senate proposal helped cause the negotiation meltdown that forced lawmakers into a special legislative session.
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