Published April 2023.

The recipe for economic freedom has fewer key ingredients than you might think. It takes sensible regulations, low taxes, but most importantly, the bread and butter: responsible state budgeting. And that’s a recipe that Louisiana’s leaders should follow this fiscal year and beyond to set the state on a course toward greater prosperity.

When it comes to economic freedom—the degree to which citizens have the ability to make decisions to work, produce, consume, and invest—Louisiana ranks 20th in the U.S., based on measures of government spending, taxes, and labor market regulation, according to the Fraser Institute’s report Economic Freedom of North America 2022. 1 The most economically free states have some of the most limited government spending through responsible budgeting, including the top five states: Florida, New Hampshire, South Dakota, Texas, and Tennessee. To stay competitive and to help its people flourish through increased economic freedom, Louisiana must look in the mirror and change its excessive spending ways.