Session Ends – Watch the Governor Talk About the Compromise and See How Lawmakers Voted
Louisiana lawmakers have ended a special session after completing a deal to close the state's $304 million deficit.
The Governor discusses the compromise shortly after the session ended.
Lawmakers approved a deal to eliminate the deficit,by taking $99 million from the rainy day fund and trimming spending by close to $85 million.
The remaining money will come from moving money from accounts that have extra cash like $17 million in salary accounts where the positions are unfilled.
The Baton Rouge Advocate reports more on the details:
Spending reductions were approved for state-fund hospitals that treat poor and uninsured people, including University Medical Center in New Orleans, as well as for rural hospitals
Cuts were made to the Department of Education, State Police and local offices that offer mental health and addiction treatment
Attorney General Jeff Landry's budget also was cut, though only by one third of what the governor originally wanted and only to the level that Landry had said he could take
The Department of Corrections, which oversees prisons, was spared from spending reductions, as Edwards had proposed.
Higher education and the popular TOPS scholarship program were not touched.
If Edwards signs off on the legislation, the spending cuts will take effect beginning March 1. This is the second round of midyear changes in the current budget cycle; lawmakers reduced the budget by $313 million in December, largely by delaying some health care payments to people who treat Medicaid patients.
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