BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) – Gov. John Bel Edwards says Louisiana will close the books on the last budget year with a surplus around $300 million, the third year in a row the state has taken in more money than it immediately spent.
The Democratic governor announced the surplus estimate Thursday at the Louisiana Sheriffs’ Association summer conference during a gubernatorial candidate forum. Edwards said an official number of the leftover cash from the 2018-19 budget year won’t be known for several more weeks.
He said the estimate comes from his budget analysts’ calculations. Louisiana has had three years of surpluses: $123 million from the 2016-17 budget year, $308 million from the 2017-18 budget year and the latest one. Surpluses must be spent on certain one-time items like construction projects and retirement debt payments.