Daily Dime

April 12, 2021

The session begins

The Louisiana Legislature kicks off a two-month lawmaking session on Monday where the central focus will be on making changes to the state tax structure and crafting a budget for the 2021-22 fiscal year. Gov. John Bel Edwards has said he wants any tax changes to be “revenue neutral,” meaning he’s OK with legislators shifting the tax burden between various groups as long as it doesn’t raise any new revenue to pay for programs and services.… Read more...

April 9, 2021

Dueling proposals on unemployment benefits

Louisiana lawmakers have two chances to change the state’s unemployment insurance program. Rep. Rodney Lyons’s House Bill 610 proposes a much-needed increase in weekly benefits, substantially raising the state’s range for weekly unemployment benefits over the next 4 years. Most importantly, the bill establishes weekly benefits based on the state’s average weekly wage — a minimum of 40% and maximum of 66.6% of that wage.… Read more...

April 8, 2021

Use federal funds to invest in Louisiana’s people

The American Rescue Plan Act will disburse $1.9 trillion in Covid-19 relief to states and localities to help them build back from the pandemic. State and local governments have broad discretion in how they spend the money so long as they don’t use it to finance tax cuts or to pay for public employee pensions.… Read more...

April 7, 2021

Louisiana advocates urge transparency this session

Earlier in the Covid-19 pandemic, the Louisiana legislature allowed written testimony in committee hearings as a way to protect public health. Unfortunately, many committees did not read submitted testimony aloud. As a result, regular Louisianians have had less opportunity to participate in their legislative process than people in nearly all other states.… Read more...