Louisiana Legislature Sends Its Good and Bad Ideas to Governor

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Louisiana's 2007 legislative session came to an end yesterday. Fueled by large projected budget surpluses, lawmakers spent the session pondering all sorts of options for tax cuts, ranging from smokestack-chasing tax giveaways to tax breaks for struggling artists. In the end, lawmakers took an important first step towards tax fairness by enacting a refundable Earned Income Tax Credit, thanks in part to the work of the Louisiana Budget Project. But legislators took a step backwards as well, expanding the ability of the wealthiest Louisianans to claim the same itemized deductions they took on their federal tax forms. This move is estimated to benefit only 20 percent of Louisiana families. Left to be seen is whether Governor Kathleen Blanco might veto these high-end cuts.

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