Louisiana senators worry federal aid could inflate budget

Published: Mar. 22, 2021 at 3:34 PM CDT|Updated: Mar. 22, 2021 at 5:22 PM CDT
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BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana senators have opened their latest budget hearings with concerns about using short-term federal cash to pay for ongoing services and programs.

Gov. John Bel Edwards proposed using more than $600 million in enhanced federal Medicaid payments to help balance his $36 billion-plus spending proposal for the budget year that begins July 1.

Members of the Senate Finance Committee on Monday questioned whether the state will have enough cash in later years to offset the federal aid when it disappears.

Commissioner of Administration Jay Dardenne says the administration believes Louisiana’s economy will continue to rebound from the effects of the coronavirus pandemic.

Lawmakers will spend weeks combing through Edwards’ budget proposal.

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