Residents and businesses who fail to pay their sanitation fees will have their water service shut off under a law passed Thursday by the City Council. The law was proposed by Mayor Mitch Landrieu as a way to boost collections and make up lost revenues from uncollected fees. Unpaid trash bills cost the city $8.5 million in 2011.
Governor Bobby Jindal vowed not to raise taxes, of any type. Instead, he has maintained the budget with spending cuts, meaning deep cuts in areas like higher education and health care.
Tyler Bridges — a reporter at The Lens, New Orleans’ investigative newsroom — has been looking into another way the governor has been able to balance the budget. Bridges says Jindal has largely drained public funds for economic development, taking hundreds of millions from the Rainy Day fund and the so-called "mega-development" fund.
Senators rewrote the representatives’ version of the budget, re-allocating arguably unstable funds that the House had painstakingly removed. But it may be hard for representatives to vote against the budget.
That’s because it sets aside $50 million for a one-time salary bonus for public school teachers.
The Baton Rouge Metro Airport's budget is projected to increase by nearly 5 percent in 2013 to $13.1 million. That's according to a proposal presented to the Airport Commission's finance committee.
Cary Morgan, the airport's business manager, says the increase from an expected $12.5 million expenditure in 2012 will be funded primarily through non-airline revenue, which is expected to jump $400,000 to $9 million.
Non-airline revenue comes from parking, concessions, rental car companies, leases of airport property and other sources.
Repeated rounds of budget shortfalls have prompted lawmakers to take an in-depth look at the long list of tax breaks that siphon billions of dollars from Louisiana's treasury each year.
A 14-member study panel of legislative leaders Monday launches a six-month review of the $4.4 billion in tax exemptions, rebates and credits on the books.
For years, when state coffers were flush, tax break bills sailed through the Louisiana Legislature. But with the economy struggling, Republicans and Democratic state lawmakers are questioning if they've been too generous.