The third installment of the “Ask the Governor” call-in radio show featured a wide variety of questions from callers. Governor John Bel Edwards was asked about everything from food stamps to marijuana, and the budget was a key topic. One caller asked about changes to the state’s film tax credit program. Edwards says the state capped the program at $180 million in credits paid out and there are no plans to change it.
“I cannot imagine, given our overall fiscal problem, that we would raise that cap from $180 million,” Edwards said.
Another caller asked whether a gas tax could be imposed to address the state’s budget shortfall. Edwards says he has established a transportation taskforce that will look into revenue raising measures such as gas taxes, tolls, and other ideas. But he says those dollars will have to go towards transportation.
“The constitution requires those proceeds to go towards the transportation trust fund. They cannot be spent on things like hospitals and universities and TOPS and K-12 education,” Edwards said.
One caller asked the governor about gun control, in light of the mass shooting in Orlando. Edwards says he is a big supporter of the Second Amendment, but he is in favor of a measure that would prohibit people on terrorist watch lists, who cannot even board planes, from purchasing guns.
“I think that that’s common sense, and I don’t think there’s anything about the Second Amendment that requires us not to do things that are clearly about common sense and safety for the public,” Edwards said.
The next “Ask the Governor” show will be July 20th.