All throughout the first part of the year, Edwards predicted doom and gloom to Louisiana’s budget that only enormous tax increases could balance. He kept insisting that, instead of making unilateral modest spending reductions of around five percent across most agencies, he largely could not cut his way to balancing last fiscal year’s budget, prompting a special session prior to this year’s regular session to hike taxes. Concerning this year’s version, he kept asserting that a cut-first strategy would gut vital programs that demanded more tax increases in another special session. After that, even though he voted for and signed $2.4 billion worth of tax increases in a 13-month span, he still talked about the disappointment of not gulping down more taxpayer dollars to stave off cuts a recalcitrant Republican-led Legislature forced upon him.
These included around $700,000 reduced from the Governor’s Office, which received over $9.1 million in funding this year, compared to last year, a 7.7 percent drop (over the original figure; that declined a bit through mid-year cuts). Edwards moaned about how this meant some staff reductions, where already the governor had budgeted some $200,000 fewer for personnel.