BATON ROUGE, LA (WAFB) - The new Louisiana House of Representatives heard more Tuesday on the state's deep money problems.
Commissioner of Administration Jay Dardenne presented to members a $1.9 billion shortfall for the 2016-2017 fiscal year.
"We're looking at a $1.9 billion problem," said Dardenne.
"We do have a tall order and I will tell you this body has recognized it immediately," said House Speaker Taylor Barras, R-New Iberia.
Lawmakers Monday elected Barras as Speaker of the House over Rep. Walt Leger, D-New Orleans, which was a setback for Governor John Bel Edwards.
Leger acknowledged the disappointment, but then pledged to work with Barras on the state's number of troubles.
"Mr. Speaker, to you, I certainly want to offer my hand in support to you in every way possible," said Rep. Leger.
"I'm happy that we all could come together and choose a person that we feel that we all can work with," said Rep. Barbara Norton, D-Shreveport.
Commissioner Dardenne said anything is a possibility, whether its cuts or raising taxes, to build a balanced budget.
"The budget that we'll present to you will be a realistic one," said Dardenne. "It will not be clouded by smoke or covered in mirrors. It's going to be a real budget based upon reality."
The administration is expected to present its budget proposal February 13.