Louisiana governor reaches out to business for budget ideas

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Gov. John Bel Edwards is starting his outreach effort to solicit ideas for patching a more than $1 billion hole in next year's state operating budget.

Edwards spokesman Richard Carbo says the governor will meet Tuesday with business leaders from around Louisiana to discuss ways to close the mid-2018 gap when temporary taxes expire.

Edwards then will begin regional meetings with lawmakers next week, hoping to draw support for ideas that will keep the state from making massive cuts to health and education programs.

But the Democratic governor has hit roadblocks on his tax proposals with the majority-Republican House. Any tax plans will require a special session to consider ahead of the shortfall, but Edwards says he won't call one unless he can reach a consensus with House GOP leaders.

© 2017 Associated Press


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