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Louisiana’s Better Choices for a Better Louisiana Coalition is taking on Governor Bobby Jindal and other legislative leaders who have said they aren’t interested in increasing taxes. The Coalition recently unveiled their plan to increase taxes by $900 million to help close next year’s budget gap, which is estimated to be $1.6 billion.
Eddie Ashworth, director of the Louisiana Budget Project, acknowledges that getting the legislature to raise taxes will be difficult, saying “I think we’re definitely pushing a rock up the hill.”
Still, the Coalition’s balanced approach to the budget shortfall, raising taxes and cutting spending, should appeal to any lawmaker who has ever claimed the title of “moderate.” Also, one proposal included in the Coalition’s plan responds to the increasing momentum even in conservative circles for addressing spending in the tax code: a review of the state’s 400-plus tax exemptions, which cost about $7 billion annually.