We’re a week away from the start of the 2019 legislative session, and since it’s an odd numbered year, legislators will be tasked with taking on tax and revenue issues. LaPolitics.com publisher Jeremy Alford says there’s one problem though.

“There is no HB 1, which means there is no budget filed. In nearly two decades of covering the legislature I cannot remember that happening. There is no budget, officially.”

Alford says that’s because the Revenue Estimating Conference cannot agree on just how much revenue the state will take in this year. House Speaker Taylor Barras is opposing the other three members recommendation to raise the forecast from last year.

Alford says with tax and budget issues at the forefront, the more conservative of the two legislative chambers will take center-stage, at least to start the session.

“The action really starts on the House side, so a lot of the tension is going to be over there with the budget writing committee, and with the tax writing committee to see what they do.”

And since the legislature will not need to enter a special session to tackle questions about money, Alford says expect two major state tax issues to dominate debates in the Capitol.

“We’ll see a debate over gas tax, and we’ll see a debate over sales tax, which was changed temporarily this term, and is set to expire next term.”

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