When facing difficult financial circumstances, Louisiana families take the steps they need to rein in their spending and plan responsibly for future expenses. This is not the case when it comes to how our state currently approaches budgeting. Fortunately, Louisianans Constitutional Amendment 4, is on the Nov. 3 ballot, is offering an opportunity for Louisianans to fix this problem.
Louisiana’s status quo approach to budgeting has led us lurching from one fiscal cliff to the next, with little accountability for how taxpayer dollars are being spent. The system is set up to allow government spending remain the same or grow, even during economic downturns like the one we’re experiencing today. Over the last few years, Louisiana’s general fund has grown by nearly 12 percent, while our population has decreased and our economy has remained flat, at best.
This disregard for how the economy is performing makes it difficult to save and plan for the future, which has become even more important considering the uncertainties and struggles we’re currently facing with COVID-19 and the state shutdown. Now is the time to put a system in place that helps ensure we are saving what we need for a rainy day.
Louisiana simply can’t afford to continue using this outdated approach to budgeting, which is why Constitutional Amendment 4 is so important for the future of our state. Amendment 4 will make our budget process more stable and predictable by basing spending limits on important things like the growth of our state’s economy. That means that we can plan better and avoid spending more than we take in from taxpayers.
By making spending more predictable and stable, Amendment 4 will also make Louisiana more inviting to entrepreneurs who are looking for new opportunities to invest. If there’s one thing job creators like, it’s stability. By stabilizing our our budget process, we will encourage job growth that provides a better life and strengthens Louisiana working families.
With all the hardships we’ve faced this year, making Louisiana better prepared for the next time disaster strikes is more important than ever. Amendment 4 will help us accomplish this while also supporting the regrowth of jobs and opportunity in our state.