Colleges fully funded in reworked state budget proposal

Lawmakers on the House budget committee have poured all the money expected from a series of House-backed tax changes into keeping Louisiana’s public colleges free of cuts next year.

The Appropriations Committee then used the remaining dollars available to close some gaps in health care services in the budget year that begins July 1. But that wasn’t enough to fill all the health care holes, with about $180 million more in state funding needed.

After making dozens of changes to next year’s budget, the House committee approved the proposal without objection Monday. The committee spent all $615 million generated by the House tax votes last week.

The full House is expected to debate the budget May 21, with lawmakers hoping they’ll have found more ways to lessen cuts before then.

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