February 4, 2014 11:40 AM
WASHINGTON - The Congressional Budget Office says President Barack Obama's health care law will mean a reduction of about 2.5 million jobs in 2024, ten years from now.
The nonpartisan CBO says the law will affect both the supply and demand for labor. It's a big increase from the... more »
January 30, 2014 5:35 PM
BATON ROUGE - To provide new services to the developmentally disabled, Gov. Bobby Jindal wants to use $11 million from the state's pool of federal recovery money for hurricanes Gustav and Ike. Jindal's budget would use those dollars earmarked for disaster needs to expand home- and community-based care for the... more »
January 30, 2014 11:36 AM
BATON ROUGE - Louisiana's Department of Corrections isn't getting the savings it expected from a law allowing nonviolent drug offenders to leave prison early.
A legislative budget analysis show $6 million in expected savings from the law that requires a drug treatment program for some to avoid prison and... more »
January 24, 2014 11:27 AM
BATON ROUGE - Governor Bobby Jindal has proposed a $25 billion budget for next year that includes more money for higher education, public schools and disabled services.
The budget was unveiled to lawmakers at the State Capitol Friday.
The plan is $624 million lower than this year's budget,... more »
January 9, 2014 11:42 AM
BATON ROUGE - Wait times to get your driver's license are much higher due to state budget cuts.
The Legislative Fiscal Office says they have shot up after the Jindal administration cut staffing levels.
The analysis says personnel at the Office of Motor Vehicles has dropped by 23... more »
January 8, 2014 10:32 PM
PORT ALLEN - A unanimous vote adopted a 2013-2014 city operating budget Wednesday night in Port Allen, nearly six months after it was supposed to go into effect.
"It's a good feeling, everybody worked together to get this done," said appointed Mayor Lynn Robertson. "Of course, it's something that... more »
December 30, 2013 11:23 AM
LIVINGSTON - Members of the Livingston Parish Council are considering an override of a budget veto by Parish President Layton Ricks.
Ricks vetoed the budget on December 19, saying it didn't contain tax money dedicated to road work and other projects.
Ricks says he will operate under the... more »
December 26, 2013 11:44 AM
BATON ROUGE - State lawmakers will be in an unfamiliar position of deciding what to do with a surplus of as much as $300 million.
It comes after years of having to cut the budget. The surplus is from better than projected tax revenue and a tax amnesty program... more »
December 23, 2013 9:32 PM
PORT ALLEN- City leaders agreed on a spending plan to fund city services Monday, some six months after a budget should have been approved.
The interim mayor, who is at the helm of city hall until special elections in April and May since Deedy Slaughter was recalled, and the... more »
December 23, 2013 7:49 AM
PORT ALLEN - City Leaders in Port Allen will have one more shot to pass a budget before the calendar flips to 2014.
The City Council called a special meeting for Monday, to get a deal done. The budget is six months overdue, and the city is still operating... more »
December 19, 2013 5:54 PM
GONZALES- The Ascension Parish council approved a move to take over the balloon festival for the 2014 year and provide money from Lamar Dixon's marketing budget to cover losses from the 2013 festival.
The council agreed to move $100,000 from Lamar Dixon to cover a portion of the nearly... more »
December 18, 2013 5:00 PM
LIVINGSTON - Livingston Parish has around $150,000 of unpaid overtime on its books, and now parish leaders are dealing with the problem.
Livingston Parish President Layton Ricks says making lump-sum payouts is unrealistic.
"We simply cannot pay it out. The budget won't allow that. If we paid it... more »
December 17, 2013 9:46 PM
PORT ALLEN - An empty seat in Port Allen has been filled, for now. Gov. Bobby Jindal chose a former mayor of Port Allen to fill the vacated seat when Deedy Slaughter was recalled last month.
Marilynn "Lynn" Bergeron Robertson of Port Allen served as mayor from 1993 to... more »
December 12, 2013 5:44 PM
PORT ALLEN - Former Mayor Deedy Slaughter racked up nearly $52,000 in legal fees by Phelps Dunbar, according to public records obtained by the News 2 Investigative Unit. The fees were from April until August of this year.
Nearly $7,000 in fees were billed to Port Allen after Judge... more »
December 5, 2013 4:21 PM
BAKER - The mayor and police chief of Baker are up in arms over the city's reduced budget.
Chief Mike Knaps wants to hire new officers to fill vacant positions, but the mayor won't allow it.
Right now the police department is down one patrol officer and three... more »
December 2, 2013 2:27 PM
LIVINGSTON- The stage is set for a showdown among Livingston Parish officials over spending when the Parish Council considers adopting a 2014 budget on Thursday. The chairmen of the council and its finance committee said amendments to the administration's proposed budget likely will be numerous, though neither would say whether... more »
December 2, 2013 9:45 AM
LIVINGSTON, La. - The stage is set for a showdown among Livingston Parish officials over spending when the Parish Council considers adopting a 2014 budget on Thursday The chairmen of the council and its finance committee said amendments to the administration's proposed budget likely will be numerous, though neither would... more »
November 21, 2013 8:01 AM
BATON ROUGE - Efforts to set up a new office aimed at collecting state government's back-owed debts are underway in the Department of Revenue.
The state's Cash Management Review Board receives an update Thursday on the creation of the Office of Debt Recovery.
Lawmakers established the office in... more »
November 19, 2013 5:17 PM
PORT ALLEN - Ousted Mayor Deedy Slaughter called a special meeting for Wednesday to introduce her budget, five days before Slaughter is forced to vacate office.
On Saturday, voters overwhelmingly voiced their disappointment with her performance and recalled her. Slaughter must vacate office by 4:30 p.m. Monday, but that's... more »
November 18, 2013 7:39 AM
PORT ALLEN - Council members agreed that one of their first priorities in the wake of Mayor Deedy Slaughter's recall is to take another stab at adopting a 2013-14 budget before city departments run out of money.
In Saturday's election, 57 percent of Port Allen voters supported a grass... more »
November 13, 2013 9:41 PM
PORT ALLEN - Voters in Port Allen will head to the polls this weekend without a 2013-2014 city budget. Mayor Deedy Slaughter vetoed the budget Nov. 4 after some council members added an amendment that left out items the mayor wanted.
Wednesday night, the council met to consider overriding... more »
November 13, 2013 11:56 AM
BATON ROUGE - A judge has ruled against the use of money from a retirement fund to balance the state budget.
The ruling says Governor Jindal and the legislature shouldn't have used $3.7 million from a probation and parole officers retirement fund in the budget.
The legislature and... more »
November 13, 2013 7:59 AM
BATON ROUGE - The East Baton Rouge Parish coroner told the Metro Council his office is woefully underfunded, and requested 44 percent more funds than allocated in Mayor-President Kip Holden's proposed 2014 budget. Holden's budget, released last week, allocates nearly $2 million to the Coroner's Office. Coroner Dr. Beau Clark... more »
November 6, 2013 5:23 PM
BATON ROUGE - Some city-parish workers are upset that pay increases for them were left out of Mayor Kip Holden's 2014 budget for Baton Rouge.
The $800 million budget includes money for police vehicles, new police officers and new firefighters, but doesn't address the issue of underpaid city-parish workers.... more »
November 5, 2013 10:26 PM
BATON ROUGE- Tuesday, the mayor unveiled a $804,000,000 spending plan for the city that the metro council will spend the next month discussing.
Public safety receives more than half of the monies allocated by Mayor Kip Holden in 2014.
"Always, public service will be a top priority," Holden... more »
November 5, 2013 5:14 PM
BATON ROUGE- The mayor's $804 million spending plan for 2014 includes additional firefighters and police officers, but does not adjust the pay scale of workers, despite him being asked to recently.
Instead, some workers will get a 3 percent merit and longevity raise. However, the mayor wrote in his... more »
November 5, 2013 2:29 PM
BATON ROUGE- The state's Medicaid program has a $50 million budget gap. The shortfall was detailed in a financial update to the Legislature's joint budget committee from the Department of Health and Hospitals. DHH Undersecretary Jerry Phillips says he doesn't expect any cuts to fall on services or the health... more »
November 5, 2013 8:22 AM
BATON ROUGE - Mayor-President Kip Holden will present Tuesday his proposed 2014 budget to council members.
City employees have called on leaders to raise their wages, claiming they are underpaid compared to others in the region.
Last year, the city spent about $800 million.
We'll have more... more »
October 23, 2013 10:24 PM
PORT ALLEN - The Port Allen City Council voted to pass a 2013-2014 city budget they've been waiting on for almost four months.
But Mayor Deedy Slaughter said Wednesday if the budget was passed with an amendment, she would veto the legislation.
Slaughter said she received an amendment... more »
October 11, 2013 8:07 AM
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama and Republicans are exploring whether they can end a budget standoff that has triggered a partial government shutdown and edged Washington to the verge of an economy-shaking federal default. Obama plans a White House meeting with GOP senators on Friday. Senate Republicans say they want... more »
October 9, 2013 10:35 PM
PORT ALLEN - Mayor Deedy Slaughter and the Port Allen City Council met Wednesday night to discuss matters focusing on a new city budget.
The $9.7 million budget is mimicked from a prior version written by the mayor. Changes made include adjustments to budgeting for capitol outlay, drainage and... more »
October 9, 2013 7:36 AM
PORT ALLEN - City leaders in Port Allen expect to hear from the public Wednesday night during their council meeting on the proposed 2013-2014 budget.
The city has operated on last year's budget since the fiscal year ended in June.
Last week, council members voiced their concerns over... more »
October 2, 2013 9:34 PM
PORT ALLEN - Mayor Deedy Slaughter lent a listening ear to the Port Allen City Council, who brought forth questions and concerns about the 2013-2014 budget.
Wednesday night, the mayor spoke very little about the budget, but said there will be more discussion next week.
Mayor Slaughter introduced... more »
October 1, 2013 9:48 AM
WASHINGTON - A Senate vote this morning has left Democrats and Republicans no closer to resolving the deadlock that has brought a partial shutdown of the federal government. The Senate today rejected the House's call to form a negotiating committee to resolve the deadlock. Republicans who control the House are... more »
September 27, 2013 3:09 PM
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama says a failure to increase the government's borrowing authority would effectively shutter the economy. Obama told reporters at the White House Friday that would have a 'profound destabilizing effect' on the U.S. and global economies. He accused Republicans of "political grandstanding" and said what they... more »
September 23, 2013 10:48 PM
BATON ROUGE - The Louisiana Naval War Commission discussed finances after a News 2 Investigation highlighted questionable business practices at the U.S.S. Kidd.
Monday, the commission focused on two state audits which highlighted issues with poor recordkeeping dealing with receipts for reimbursements and approval of travel and expenses.
... more »
September 19, 2013 11:55 AM
BATON ROUGE- A new law is causing problems for the group that forecasts Louisiana's income.
The law requires the Revenue Estimating Conference to determine which dollars from fees and other dedicated funds are expected to appear annually, in hopes that could lessen future state budget shortfalls. Those estimates determine... more »
September 18, 2013 10:26 AM
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama is touting positive gains in the economy but also warning that a "locked up" Washington is delaying progress on other issues that could build on that growth. Obama says the most obvious example is his push for a comprehensive immigration bill. He says a Senate-passed... more »
September 13, 2013 7:04 PM
BATON ROUGE - A projected $39 million shortfall in the state's public-to-private hospital deal dominated discussion at the Joint Legislative Committee on the Budget meeting Friday.
Earlier this week the non-partisan Legislative Fiscal Office projected a budget shortfall for the current fiscal year, saying Gov. Bobby Jindal's plan to... more »
September 11, 2013 9:51 PM
PORT ALLEN - City business was taken care of Wednesday night, with an agenda containing salary talks and Port Allen's budget.
Before diving into the agenda, Mayor Deedy Slaughter and the council went behind closed doors into an executive session to discuss three separate lawsuits involving the City of... more »
September 10, 2013 5:53 PM
BAKER - Thousands of people in Baker could lose their fire protection in November, which is when the fire chief plans to close one of their two stations due to budget cuts.
The Lavey Lane fire station will close Nov. 1 if funds aren't found to keep it open,... more »
September 3, 2013 8:33 AM
HAMMOND- Tangipahoa Parish Sheriff Daniel Edwards has reduced his operating budget to about $18.2 million for the current fiscal year, down from almost $19 million for the previous year. The Hammond Daily Start reports that records show about half of Edwards' budget goes to $9 million in salaries for 263... more »
August 29, 2013 10:33 PM
GONZALES- The price of gas in Ascension Parish, and every parish in Louisiana, is rising.
Here, gas was about $3.40 Thursday. That was a one-cent increase overnight. Gonzales shared the same average as Baton Rouge, Denham Springs, and Hammond.
The national average was about $3.56.
The increase... more »
August 27, 2013 11:26 AM
BATON ROUGE - Lt. Gov. Jay Dardenne said today that even after a record-setting year for Louisiana tourism, the budget is still a concern.
Dardenne said 26.3 million people visited the state in 2012, generating $665 million in tax revenue. He said the concern is over the dwindling grant... more »
August 26, 2013 3:26 PM
BATON ROUGE - The Legislative Auditor says a former budget officer at the Southern University Law Center may have broken the law by failing to deposit more than $280,000 in cash, checks and money orders over three years.
However, the district attorney's office said they don't plan to file... more »
August 14, 2013 10:33 PM
PORT ALLEN - Table talk got heated as frustrated council members and taxpayers discussed the city's finances.
"Nothing gets done," said Councilman R.J. Loupe, Jr. "The judge orders and it still doesn't get done. Now you tell me what's right and what's wrong."
Leaders moved to introduce an... more »
August 13, 2013 10:33 PM
PORT ALLEN - Fire fighters at Fire Station 1 in Port Allen welcomed a new Ferrara fire truck to their fleet Tuesday morning.
But, it was not met without controversy. For hours after its arrival, there was no money to pay the insurance on the truck, so it was... more »
August 13, 2013 10:36 AM
LAFAYETTE - Officials say the Lafayette Parish School System will need millions of dollars over the next few years if schools are to improve. Besides using reserve funds, the only option is for the district to ask for more money from taxpayers, either in the form of higher sales taxes,... more »
August 9, 2013 4:14 PM
WASHINGTON - President Barack Obama says he doesn't think congressional Republicans will force a government shutdown in this fall's budget fight. Obama said at a news conference Friday that the public would not understand a budget confrontation that leads to a cutoff of government services that could weaken the economy's... more »
August 7, 2013 10:27 PM
PORT ALLEN - Money talk in Port Allen made circles around the council and mayor, as they work to come to an agreement on drafting an ordinance about salaries.
"So from this point on there won't be any question as to what that is," said councilman Garry Hubble.
... more »
August 3, 2013 10:19 AM
BATON ROUGE, La. - Fees for using state parks in Louisiana are going up, the result of state budget cutbacks. Stuart Johnson, the state's assistant secretary for state parks, tells The Advocate that the administration's budget relies on $1.3 million in self-generated funds from park operations. Johnson says the money... more »
July 29, 2013 2:43 PM
BATON ROUGE - First-time claims for unemployment insurance in Louisiana for the week ending July 20 decreased from the previous week's total. The state labor department figures released Monday show 3,035 initial claims compared to 3,764 a week earlier. The four-week moving average of initial claims increased to 2,978 from... more »
July 26, 2013 2:15 PM
BATON ROUGE- LSU System employees will receive a pay adjustment for the first time in four years the new president and chancellor announced Friday.
"This is a long overdue action that has been precluded by financial circumstances," F. King Alexander said.
The pay raises or supplements will range... more »
July 25, 2013 3:49 PM
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - President Barack Obama says the House Republican budget is a "bad bargain" for the middle class. Obama says the House GOP wants to cut spending on education, science and clean energy when the country should be investing in those sectors. He says cutting back in those areas... more »
July 24, 2013 7:50 AM
ST. FRANCISVILLE - Better-than-expected sales tax collections, an increase in state aid and budget cuts helped the West Feliciana Parish school system end the 2012-13 fiscal year with a surplus. Instead of having to dip into a "rainy day" fund to the tune of $500,000 as expected, Finance Director Helen... more »
July 17, 2013 11:05 PM
CARVILLE- Half of the state's full-time National Guard employees are being furloughed.
It is related to the national government sequestration.
Employees, including guardsmen, could get a 20% reduction in their pay because of the unpaid days off. It started in July and continues until September.
Leadership at... more »
July 16, 2013 1:24 PM
BATON ROUGE - About 1,900 state employees received pink slips in the just-ended budget year, nearly as many workers as were laid off during the four prior years of Gov. Bobby Jindal's administration. The layoff figures were released Tuesday by the Department of State Civil Service for the 2012-13 fiscal... more »
July 11, 2013 10:42 AM
BATON ROUGE - The chairman of the House budget-writing committee has become a Republican. Rep. Jim Fannin, of Jonesboro, says he switched to the GOP on Wednesday because he believes the Democratic Party no longer represents his political views or his constituents' views on issues like marriage, gun rights and... more »
July 2, 2013 4:57 PM
BATON ROUGE - House Speaker Chuck Kleckley says he doesn't want lawmakers to hold a veto session to reconsider Gov. Bobby Jindal's budget cuts and bill rejections. Kleckley, a Republican ally of the governor, released a statement Tuesday announcing his opposition to the session - though he said he doesn't... more »
June 27, 2013 11:38 AM
BATON ROUGE - Gov. Bobby Jindal has signed next year's construction budget without stripping any projects with his line-item veto. The governor didn't need to remove anything he doesn't like because his office will have decision-making power over which new projects advance in the 2013-14 fiscal year that begins July... more »
June 26, 2013 10:24 PM
PORT ALLEN - A special council meeting, scheduled for Wednesday night in Port Allen to talk about Mayor Deedy Slaughter's proposed budget, failed to do what it was set to finalize.
The council did not settle on a motion that would publicly discuss Slaughter's city budget plan. The Council... more »
June 26, 2013 10:57 AM
PORT ALLEN - A special council meeting is scheduled tonight for Port Allen City Council to talk about Mayor Deedy Slaughter's proposed budget.
However, there are questions about whose agenda they'll be following. Two agendas were posted in City Hall yesterday: one produced by the council, the other by... more »
June 25, 2013 3:23 PM
BATON ROUGE - Gov. Bobby Jindal is defending his decision to strip $4 million from next year's budget that would have expanded a program that provides at-home services to the developmentally disabled. The Republican governor has faced criticism for line-item vetoes that struck out that funding for a program called... more »
June 22, 2013 11:17 AM
GONZALES, La. - The Ascension Parish school district expects to achieve a budget surplus for the second consecutive year. The Advocate reports the School Board has approved a 2013-14 budget that projects $201 million in general fund revenue, an increase of nearly $7 million from last year. The anticipated general... more »
June 21, 2013 4:54 PM
BATON ROUGE - Gov. Bobby Jindal has removed $4 million slated to expand a program that provides at-home services to the developmentally disabled from next year's $25 billion budget. Jindal stripped that funding with his line-item veto power, along with other money set aside for disabled services, including for a... more »
June 19, 2013 9:23 PM
BAKER - City officials say police in Baker will keep their jobs, despite the city's money problems.
Officials in Baker have been working on cutting back on their city spending for years, but the city is almost $2 million in the hole. Lately, the city's been spending previous years'... more »
June 19, 2013 10:26 AM
BATON ROUGE - The East Baton Rouge Parish School Board is scheduled Thursday to approve its annual operating budget, but board members remain divided on some of Superintendent Bernard Taylor's proposed spending and cutting plans. The School Board is debating a proposed $426.6 million budget that includes $6.2 million worth... more »
June 18, 2013 4:04 PM
WASHINGTON - House Republicans have unveiled slashing cuts to a program that helps localities build community development projects. Their rivals in the Democratic-controlled Senate are moving to restore Republican cuts to international food aid and nutrition help for pregnant women. Senate Democrats are pressing to restore deep cuts to domestic... more »
June 12, 2013 10:59 PM
PORT ALLEN - Few fireworks at the Port Allen City Council meeting Wednesday; and some say little business was done, too.
Most were waiting for the introduction of the 2013-2014 city budget, due to start in July. But while Mayor Deedy Slaughter pulled the budget out of an envelope... more »
June 7, 2013 5:01 PM
BATON ROUGE- Thousands of kids will go to private schools next fall thanks to the approval of the state budget this week.
The Louisiana Association of Educators spoke out about how the state originally planned to pay for the program. Last year, the union filed a lawsuit against the... more »