Colleges asked to prepare for $131M possible cut this year

by Melinda Deslatte, Associated Press


BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Louisiana's public colleges are being told to prepare for as much as a $131 million cut across campuses in the remaining five months of the state budget year.

Gov. John Bel Edwards' chief budget adviser, Commissioner of Administration Jay Dardenne, asked for budget cut proposals in a letter to the state's higher education leaders this week.

LSU System President F. King Alexander released the letter in an online posting Friday.

Dardenne told the higher education officials that the reductions could be necessary to balance this year's budget, if lawmakers don't agree to raise taxes or find other ways to generate new money to close a gap estimated at more than $700 million.

Edwards has proposed a list of tax options for lawmakers to consider in a February special session.