Wednesday, 06 March 2013 13:19
New Orleans could feel budget brunt as Fannin backs Jindal’s one-time money use

City-Sightseeing-New-OrleansLouisiana Governor Bobby Jindal has a budgetary ally in the House, in fact, one with plenty of clout.

In an interview with the The Monroe News Star published today , Louisiana House Appropriations Committee Chairman Jim Fannin (D-Jonesboro) supported the use of one-time money to balance Louisiana’s budget.

While the comments might be pleasing to the Governor,Fannin’s opinion might have little fans among members of the New Orleans delegation who are concerned about significant harm to its now-thriving tourism industry due to various reasons from a “money swipe” by the administration to a increase in sales tax which many in the industry oppose.

New Orleans Mayor Mitch Landrieu has already expressed concerns about the state dipping into the convention center funds.

Here are Fanin’s comments, as published by the News Star.

“Everyone has an opinion about one-time revenue, and I agree that generally it’s not the best budget practice to use those funds,” Fannin said. “My position has been that most of the revenue is taken from funds (like $100 million from the New Orleans Convention Center) created by general fund dollars that have a surplus.
“I don’t really see that as one-time money. Those funds will be replenished. If there’s a surplus in those funds, do you let the fund continue to grow or cut something like health care or education? Do you go to the savings account or make those cuts? The governor has chosen to lessen the cuts.”
Fannin acknowledged that some of the non-recurring revenue included in the upcoming budget, like the expected $60 million from a tobacco settlement, “are certainly truly one-time dollars that won’t be coming again,” he said.


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