Poll finds Louisiana voters do not want their taxes increased

May 12, 2017 - 7:14 am

(WWL.com)  Raising taxes is not popular among Louisiana voters, according to a survey from Southern Media and Opinion Research. 

Lawmakers have proposed increasing taxes on everything from a pack of cigarettes to a gallon of gasoline to close a looming budget hole. Pollster Bernie Pinsonat says two-thirds of voters say they do not want their legislator to raise the state’s gas tax.

“Increasing taxes on gasoline in this survey is very unpopular with only 29 percent wanting their state legislator to vote for a bill that would initially raise gasoline taxes by 17 percent,” Pinsonat said.

In this fiscal session, lawmakers had to resolve a $440 million budget shortfall for the next fiscal year, and deal with an imminent $1.3 billion fiscal cliff in 2018. Pinsonat says according to his survey, the public thinks the state has more than enough money.

“Fifty-four percent think the state government’s problems are primarily caused by too much spending, and only 26 percent believe the state government’s problems are caused by not having enough revenue,” Pinsonat said.

Pinsonat says while voters don’t want to see their own taxes go up, they also oppose an increase in business taxes. The survey finds 18 percent of respondents believe taxes on business are absorbed by profits, but 67 percent say the tax is passed on to the customers.

“They realize that when you tax a business, the taxes are going to end up being paid by them. So they’re almost as opposed to taxing business as paying more income tax. There’s really not much difference,” Pinsonat said.

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