So the state budget doesn’t balance, and complex machinations (i.e. tax increases) have to be used in order to balance it. Well, what’s new?

The obvious fix is to increase the tax on gasoline and diesel fuel by 10 cents to 15 cents a gallon. There will never be a better time to do it, as we are highly unlikely to ever see gasoline selling for less than $1.50 a gallon in any future year. It is selling for about half of what is was a year ago, so nobody should complain. Plus, it is a tax everyone will pay, and why shouldn’t everyone pay it? Additionally, in a year or two, everyone will forget we raised the fuel tax.

Secondly, add a $1 tax to every pack of cigarettes. What is the worst thing that could happen? Some people might quit smoking and lower our health care costs? Wow. That would be so terrible, I don’t think we could stand it. Overall tax revenue would increase.

Lastly, increase the alcohol tax by at least 50 percent —probably 100 percent. Again, what is the worst thing that could happen? Some people would consume less alcohol, resulting in fewer DWIs and fewer highway deaths due to drinking? Wow again. That would be just terrible. Again, overall tax revenue will increase.

So there you have it, the budget solution, and you won’t even have to cut funds going to education.

Douglas Doremus


Baton Rouge