Tax & Budget

With the state economy struggling, and tens of thousands of Louisianans moving out of state, businesses and families need tax and budget reform—to give them an incentive to come to, and remain in, Louisiana.

A successful series of across-the-board tax reforms, touching all layers of the tax code—corporate and individual, and sales and income taxes—will promote growth and expand opportunity. Our state deserves a 21st century tax code that encourages growth and taxes individuals and businesses transparently and fairly. Tax reform can spark an economic revolution in Louisiana—if only lawmakers take the initiative to act, and act boldly.

Along with our tax code, our budget process in Louisiana also needs to be reformed. Over the past several years, Louisiana has lurched from budget crisis to budget crisis, with lawmakers gathering for costly special sessions to patch together yet another stopgap solution. But after years of short-term thinking, policy-makers must now embrace a more comprehensive, holistic approach, to prevent the conditions that created the crises in the first place. Coupled with constitutional reforms that will give lawmakers more flexibility to manage the entire state budget, rather than just small portions of it, improvements to the budget process will modernize the state’s practices—bringing long-needed fiscal stability.

Louisiana Needs To Join the Tax Revolution

Louisiana Needs To Join the Tax Revolution

It’s time for Louisiana to join the flat tax revolution. Four states passed a flat personal income tax this year after only four did over the 100 years, bringing the total to 14 states that have or will soon have flat income taxes. Flattening income taxes provides more opportunities for people to flourish, but eliminating them...

By Vance Ginn

Louisiana Economic Situation November 2022

Louisiana Economic Situation November 2022

Key Point: Louisiana’s labor market looks okay on the surface, but the labor force is 16,613 (-0.8%) below the COVID-related shutdown in February 2020, and private sector employment is 35,900 (-2.3%) below then. Labor Market: A job is the best path to prosperity as work brings dignity, hope, and purpose to people through the life-long...

By Vance Ginn

Louisiana’s Taxes Need An Overhaul

Louisiana’s Taxes Need An Overhaul

Originally published in Center Square Louisiana has many of the right characteristics for families to flourish. This includes abundant natural resources and thriving petrochemical, oil and gas, and tourism sectors. In fact, New Orleans was recently ranked as the 9th fastest-growing city for 2022 by the American Growth Project. They note that the worker shortages...

By Vance Ginn

Highest In the Nation: Louisiana’s Sales Tax Needs Reform

Highest In the Nation: Louisiana’s Sales Tax Needs Reform

The House of Representatives Ways and Means Committee is currently in the process of studying the state’s tax structure, due to a resolution brought by Representative Richard Nelson. In an upcoming meeting, the committee will begin a discussion on the status and structure of the state sales tax. Louisiana’s sales tax rate, currently at 9.55%,...

By Jamie Tairov

Budget Surplus For Now, Not Forever

Budget Surplus For Now, Not Forever

On October 21st, the Joint House and Senate Committee that oversees the Louisiana government budget had their monthly meeting. In October of each year, lawmakers and the public get a first look at the surplus revenue from the previous fiscal year. This year, the state posted some massive numbers. After all the tax receipts were...

By Jamie Tairov

Louisiana’s Business Tax Climate Needs Work

Louisiana’s Business Tax Climate Needs Work

Today, the Tax Foundation released the 2023 State Business Tax Climate Index. The report ranks all fifty states based on the collective burdens of each state’s corporate income tax, individual income tax, sales tax, unemployment insurance, and property tax. The results show that spending restraint funded with low rate, broad-based taxes provide the best climate...

By Vance Ginn

Pelican Institute: Louisiana Economic Report October 2022

Pelican Institute: Louisiana Economic Report October 2022

Louisiana Economic Situation October 2022 Key Point: Louisiana’s labor market looks okay on the surface but the working-age population is 12,366 (-0.35%) below pre-shutdowns in February 2020 and private sector employment remains 35,900 (-2.2%) below then. Moreover, the decline in real GDP annualized growth in Q2:2022 of 3% was the 5th worst in the nation. Labor...

By Vance Ginn

Taking Steps Toward Tax Reform

Taking Steps Toward Tax Reform

Louisiana has a highly complex system of personal income tax. Our system includes too many complicated exemptions, deductions, and carve-outs for certain taxpayers that reduce only their burden, as opposed to everyone. Moreover, we have a progressive tax system that increases the percentage paid when more money is earned. Legislation enacted in 2021 reduced the...

By Jamie Tairov

The Ginn Economic Brief: U.S. Economic Situation—October 2022

The Ginn Economic Brief: U.S. Economic Situation—October 2022

Top Stat: Average hourly earnings (inflation-adjusted) down about 3.0% year-over-year Key Point: The economy will get worse before it gets better because of bad policies out of D.C. Overview: The shutdown recession from February to April 2020 and subsequent government failures caused major destruction to Americans’ livelihoods, which includes a recession and high inflation. One...

By Vance Ginn

Talking Taxes With Tommy Tucker

Talking Taxes With Tommy Tucker

As the conversation heats up in advance of next year’s legislative session (and statewide elections) about the need for fundamental tax reform in Louisiana, many questions abound. Can we eliminate the state income tax? How would you go about doing it? What are the benefits? Can it happen this year, and, if not, are there...

By Daniel J. Erspamer

Tax Reform: The Conversation We Need to Have

Tax Reform: The Conversation We Need to Have

One of our core beliefs at the Pelican Institute is that a free market leads to greater flourishing and opportunity for Louisiana families. Free people, unencumbered by government barriers, produce goods and services that elevate living standards for themselves, their families, and their communities. Yet one of the barriers that Louisianans have faced for decades...

By Chris Lowery

Tax Reform Will Bring Opportunity Home

Tax Reform Will Bring Opportunity Home

Louisiana has been plagued with demographic woes for years. In 2021, Louisiana ranked fifth in the nation for population loss. Our state’s population decreased by more than 27,000 people. This was not a one-off issue, but part of a larger negative trend with Louisiana’s resident population decreasing since 2016. One major factor in rapid outmigration...

By John Kay