Published: January 19, 2021
By: Sarah Procopio, LSU Manship School News Service
BATON ROUGE–A cautious revenue forecast was adopted by a panel of state leaders Tuesday as they set income projections used to create the state’s budget.
While the forecast for fiscal year 2022 adopted by the Revenue Estimating Conference predicted a slow economic recovery and more money into the state coffers, it also predicted there will be $228 million less for the state than previously forecast.
Tax collections from the next fiscal year, which starts June 30, will increase by almost $115 million from the projected total for this year. However, that will not be enough to offset the loss of almost $800 million in federal funds. In addition, $90 million from the state rainy day fund used to patch up holes in the previous budget will not be available.
The panel has four members: Commissioner of Administration Jay Dardenne, Senate President Page Cortez, House Speaker Clay Schexnayder and independent economist Stephen Barnes of the University of Louisiana at Lafayette.
“This has been a historically tumultuous time for the state,” said Barnes. “We’re still looking at a lot of uncertainty.”
Some of that uncertainty involves how the latest federal coronavirus relief package, which will provide Louisiana with at least $2 billion in aid, can be used to fill in the budget. The panel is awaiting rules on how that money and an upcoming relief bill proposed by the incoming Biden administration can be used.
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