Black Caucus wins legislative victories in Senate during special session

Paul Braun and Devon Sanders

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Sen. J.P. Morrell, right, who pushed for an increase in the earned income tax credit, huddled with other senators on the Senate floor Sunday. (Photo: Tryfon Boukouvidis, LSU Manship School News Service)

The Legislative Black Caucus succeeded in a last-minute bid to revive an expansion of the state’s earned income tax credit in a bill passed by the Senate Sunday.

The change would cost the state $21 million. But caucus members argued that it was needed to offset some of the impact on the working poor of a possible extension of half of the penny of sales tax set to expire this summer.

Sen. J.P. Morrell, D-New Orleans, said the link between the earned income tax credit and the sales tax renewal could determine the fate of the special session.

“I think the House has to make a decision as to whether they want to risk the sales tax by not allowing for the increase in EITC,” Morrell said. “That’s not just a Senate problem. There are a tremendous amount of House members, in particular in the Black Caucus, that struggle with the idea of continuing a half-penny of sales tax.”

Read the story in WWNO.

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