Louisiana House Leaders Plan Closed-Door Financial Retreat

Louisiana House Chamber

BATON ROUGE (AP) — Louisiana House lawmakers are planning a closed-door retreat to hash out ideas for closing a looming $1 billion-plus state budget gap.

         The meeting will be held Thursday at a Baton Rouge catering hall.

         Alexandria Rep. Lance Harris, head of the House GOP delegation, called the gathering an "educational, bipartisan retreat" aimed at getting the most up-to-date information about the state's finances and the options for filling the budget hole.

         Minden Rep. Gene Reynolds, leader of the House Democrats, says 79 of the chamber's 103 members said they plan to attend. He says no votes will be taken.

         The $1 billion-plus shortfall hits July 1, when temporary taxes expire. Proposals by Democratic Gov. John Bel Edwards to rewrite tax laws to close the gap have gone nowhere in the majority-Republican House.

         – by AP Reporter Melinda Deslatte


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