Report: Half of LA families don't make enough to cover expenses

New report says many families struggle to make ends meet

BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - Kimberly Franklin, 47, makes a living working with the homeless.

A single mother of two bringing in about $2,200 a month working full-time, she says times are hard.

"It's a struggle. It's a daily struggle working, paying bills, trying to make ends meet," said Franklin, a casse manager with Capital Area Alliance for the Homeless.

A new report from Loyola University says more than half of Louisiana families with children do not make enough money to cover basic costs.

"I never dreamed my life could feel like such a never ending nightmare. I struggle daily with not knowing if my husband will be laid off or if we will have enough to pay our bills or if we will lose everything we have worked so hard for," said Christina Boudwin of New Orleans.

And like Franklin, the report also says four out of five single mother households are not far from what researchers call "serious economic deprivation."

A separate, new study from the Louisiana Budget Project is also critical of the state's tax structure. Researchers say low-income taxpayers pay double the tax rate paid by the rich.

"The majority of my check is taxes. If I could bring home what I pay in taxes, I'd be OK," said Franklin.

The government's reaction? Secretary of Revenue Tim Barfield sent a statement which read in part "We believe in minimizing the reliance on government subsidies and programs while lowering taxes and supporting programs that are conducive to sustainable job creation and overall economic development."

A part of his plan two-years-ago, Gov. Bobby Jindal proposed getting rid of Louisiana's income tax, while also raising taxes on lower-income families.

The LBP study says that plan would have taken even more from the poor.

Copyright WAFB 2015. All Rights Reserved.