Governor John Bel Edwards remains hopeful lawmakers can pass a budget plan to address the loss of $1.3 billion in temporary taxes that expire next year. Edwards spoke with reporters shortly after his proposed tax on business sales was tabled for the legislative session. Edwards says there are still multiple tax bills waiting to be discussed.
“Things like lowering the rate and broadening the base of the individual income tax, corporate income tax, the sales tax, all of which come from the task force report,” Edwards said.
But Edwards says since the GOP dominated House Ways and Means committee didn’t like his plan, House Republican leaders should unveil their own proposal.
“At this point in time I’m looking for the House leadership to step up, offer solutions, not just continue to say no,” Edwards said.
But Chairman of the House Republican Legislative Delegation Lance Harris of Alexandria says the legislative process is their plan, and that starts with the proposed budget for next fiscal year.
“Appropriations is looking at getting HB1 out next week. So that’s part of the plan is being immersed in the legislative process,” Harris said.
Harris says legislators will continue to look at various bills. Other ideas on the table include changing how sales taxes are collected and altering income tax brackets. He anticipates the GOP can support some of those ideas.
“There’s 160 bills, I think, that have been filed. So I know there’s going to be some that will be passed out of committee on the floor. So naturally there will be some things that we look at, no question about it,” Harris said.