Senators shut down House leader's talk of deficit spending
BATON ROUGE - The leader of the House budget committee provoked harsh reactions from senators by suggesting Louisiana may need to deficit spend to make it through the budget year.
House Appropriations Chairman Cameron Henry, a Republican, told the Senate Finance Committee the state may "be rolling" some of the budget shortfall to next year.
Senators Monday said that would damage public trust, harm Louisiana's credit rating and worsen next year's financial problems. The governor's chief budget adviser, Jay Dardenne, said he thinks the idea would violate the constitution.
Senate President John Alario, a Republican, chastised Henry, saying deficit spending would be a "terrible way to conduct the people's business."
The House passed a mix of tax increases and cuts that wouldn't fully rebalance this year's budget. Senators want to raise more revenue.