Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Why then?

Like Georgia, Louisiana is facing a tough budget crunch in the coming year. And, like Georgia, Louisiana has a surplus budget it can draw from ... of course its surplus reserve can't be used to plug the gaps in its budget.

That, of course, seems insane to me. Shouldn't reserve budgets exist for situations just like this one? Georgia had to tap into its in order to get through last year, and we probably need to tap into it again to get through this year's crisis.

1 Comments:

Blogger Cousin Pat from Georgia said...

Wow. That article really doesn't take into account several glaring factors contributing to the "budget crunch" that is coming for Louisiana.

First of all, you have to look at where the surpluses have come from. In Louisiana, the budget surplus was mainly the result of a hot retail and construction economy in the wake of the 2005 hurricanes. Insurance & federal money came in as people went about rebuilding their lives and the sales tax revenue from that 'boom' ended up creating a surplus.

The voters here forced a referendum that it not be used for anything other than specific purposes, like:

Infrastructure improvements. Georgia has a well established investment in the state's infrastructure already. Many projects in the state are either maintenance on already completed projects or expansions on already completed projects.

Louisiana is right now attempting to modernize our derelict infrastructure, and the reason they're not counting many of these projects on the budget just yet is because of confusion about the project being in federal or state jurisdiction. The reason the surplus was specifically designated for such projects is because folks in Baton Rouge and industry have, for so long, ignored major improvements and sent money elsewhere.

2:05 PM  

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