Low gas prices means big trouble for oil and gas companies

Gas prices drop but there's a downside for Louisiana

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The price of oil has fallen below $60 a barrel, which is the lowest it has been since 2009.

Lower oil prices means that the price at the pump should fall as well. However, while it sounds like a good thing, there is a negative for some in the state.

With our economy being so heavily tied to oil and gas, the low price of oil could spell bad news down the road in the form of less money coming through the state.

Agencies across Louisiana are already planning for budget cuts which means that people who work to produce the oil might just find themselves without a job in the near future.

Don Briggs, president of the Louisiana Oil and Gas Association says that for every dollar per barrel that oil drops starting at around $96 a barrel, the state loses 12 million dollars. He says that, eventually, Louisiana might end up facing a half billion dollar shortfall.

"The reality is, when we drill less," says Briggs, "fewer people are employed."

This story is not all bad. Lafourche Parish President Charlotte Randolph says that when people spend less at the pump, they tend to spend more in other places which boosts revenue from taxes.

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