State House of Representatives Vote to Increase Sales Tax
The State House of Representatives has passed a one penny increase in the sales tax as one way to help shore up a $940 million dollar budget deficit for the fiscal year that ends on June 30th.
The lower chamber also will dip into the BP Settlement Fund and the Rainy Day fund to help close the budget gap. House members have also ok'd more than $100 million dollars in cuts.
The sales tax increase will bring in about $200 million a year. The total pricetag for today's events in the House is close to $650 million. The sales tax measure passed after some arm twisting of Republicans by House Speaker Taylor Barras.
Governor John Bel Edwards wanted the sales tax increase to stay in force for five years, but members of the House reached a compromise to keep the added one-cent tax for just 18 months. The increased tax passed on a 76-27 vote. It needed 70 votes.
Here's how lawmakers voted:
Mr. Speaker, Abraham Adams Anders Armes Bagley Bagneris Berthelot Billiot Bishop Bouie Broadwater Brown, C. Brown, T. Carmody Carpenter Carter, G. Carter, R. Carter, S. Chaney Coussan Cox Danahay Davis Dwight Foil
Franklin Gaines Gisclair Glover Hall Harris, J. Harris, L. Havard Hensgens Hilferty Hill Hoffmann Hollis Hunter Huval Jackson James Jefferson Jenkins Johnson, R. Jones Landry, N. Landry, T. LeBas Leger Leopold
Lyons Magee Marcelle McFarland Miller, D. Miller, G. Montoucet Moreno Norton Pierre Pope Price Pugh Reynolds Schexnayder Schroder Seabaugh Shadoin Smith Stokes Thibaut White Willmott Zeringue
Total -- 76
Abramson Amedee Bacala Connick Cromer DeVillier Edmonds Emerson Falconer Garofalo
Guinn Hazel Henry Hodges Horton Howard Ivey Johnson, M. Lopinto Mack
Miguez Morris, Jay Morris, Jim Pearson Pylant Richard Simon Talbot
Total -- 28
Total -- 1