Midyear budget cuts disproportionately hit elected officials
BATON ROUGE - In the latest round of midyear budget cuts, Gov. Bobby Jindal is taking a deeper carving knife to his fellow statewide elected officials than to most agencies under his control, including his own office.
The governor's office will come through the $61 million in cuts with a reduction of $10,000 - less than one-tenth of 1 percent of its budget.
Departments overseen by the lieutenant governor, treasurer, insurance commissioner and agriculture commissioner are in line for cuts of 3 percent to 4 percent. And several elected officials say the disproportionate hit is unfair.
Commissioner of Administration Kristy Nichols said the cuts were decided in the context of also balancing next year's budget. She said elected officials' agencies will be getting less of an overall hit over the two-year period.
A look at some of the reductions planned by Jindal to close the midyear deficit:
$10,000 cut out of $11.8 million budget, 0.09 percent reduction.
-GOVERNOR'S DIVISION OF ADMINISTRATION:
$2.5 million cut out of $831 million budget, 0.3 percent reduction.
OFFICES OVERSEEN BY STATEWIDE ELECTED OFFICIALS:
-Secretary of State: $931,593 cut out of $77.6 million budget, 1.2 percent reduction.
-Lieutenant Governor: $74,143 cut out of $7.3 million budget, 1 percent reduction.
-Culture, Recreation and Tourism: $3.5 million cut out of $90.8 million budget, 3.9 percent reduction.
-Agriculture and Forestry: $2 million cut out of $76.9 million budget, 2.6 percent reduction.
-Attorney General: $1.5 million cut out of $64.4 million budget, 2.4 percent reduction.
-Insurance: $1.4 million cut out of $34.2 million budget, 4 percent reduction.
-Treasurer: $491,102 cut out of $12.4 million budget, 3.9 percent reduction.