[NEW] Louisiana's $1 Billion Giveaway 

Giveaways cost the U.S. taxpayers $50 billion a year

by Fred Kammer, SJ 

The New Orleans Advocate, in an eight-part report[1], has highlighted the burgeoning practice of creating tax-breaks (“tax incentives,” “tax loopholes,” “tax expenditures”) that now cost Louisiana $1.08 billion dollars a year.  Legislatures create these benefits purportedly to induce businesses to locate in a state or expand there.  Two examples from The Advocate illustrate these incentives:

  • Every time the Robertson clan films another episode of “Duck Dynasty,” Louisiana is on the hook for nearly $330,000, at last count.
  • During the past three years, state taxpayers agreed to fork over nearly $700,000 to Wal-Mart to build new stores in two affluent suburbs.[2] 


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Read JSRI’s 2009 profile of poverty and inequality in the State of Louisiana »

A sample of the profile follows:

Who are Louisiana’s Poor?

  • 270,794 are children (24.7% of kids)
  • 69,185 are elders (13.5% of seniors)
  • 404,239 are adults 18-64 (15.1 % of adults)
  • 353,716 are in female-headed families (37.7% of such families)

Looked at another way:

  • 307,794 males are poor (14.9 % males)
  • 436,424 females are poor (19.7 % of females)
  • 298,769 whites are poor (10.8 % of whites)
  • 413,097 blacks are poor (30.6 % of blacks)
  • 30,469 Hispanics are poor (21.1% of Hispanics)
  • 18,476 immigrants are poor (14.2 % of foreign-born)

Ms. Mary Baudouin is the lead JSRI liaison to Louisiana groups, assisted by other staff as appropriate.

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Banner photograph: Tour Louisiana