Lawmakers lock Louisiana into spending hikes for the future
BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Flush with new cash in an election year, Louisiana lawmakers got generous, passing pay raises and boosted spending plans.
The full bill won't come due until later years.
The Legislature didn't have enough money to cover all the items on its wish list. Rather than say no to officials and constituencies back home, lawmakers backloaded some spending plans to hit when the new term begins.
They increased payments to sheriffs for housing state inmates in parish jails, phasing it in over two years. They agreed to increase a state salary paid to local district attorneys, but not until a year from now and then again a year after that.
Legislators also agreed to expand Louisiana's Medicaid program to include more children with developmental disabilities, starting in the 2020-21 budget year.
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