LA Revenue Panel decides against revising forecast

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - The state's revenue forecasting panel has decided against revising its income projections for now, leaving Gov. Bobby Jindal without additional money to plug into his budget proposal.

Two members of the four-member Revenue Estimating Conference, including House Speaker Jim Tucker, say they are hesitant to raise revenue forecasts even though the state's economy appears to be showing improvement.

Tucker says there are several months before a final budget for the 2011-12 fiscal year needs to be crafted, giving the forecasting panel enough time to revise its projections later when more data is available.

The state faces a $1.6 billion budget gap in the new year that begins July 1. Jindal will submit his budget proposal March 11.

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