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Voters pass 3, reject 3 Constitutional amendments

by Associated Press

There were six proposals to change the Louisiana Constitution.

Voters approved Amendment 1, which will enact residency, education and experience qualifications for new registrars of voters.

Voters rejected Amendment 2, which would have given Louisiana’s four public college system management boards the authority to change tuition and fee rates on college campuses without needing approval from state lawmakers.

Voters rejected Amendment 3, which would have done away with a tax break that allows businesses to deduct the federal income taxes they pay from their state tax liability. Corporations in exchange would have been taxed at a flat rate of 6.5 percent, rather than varying rates from 4 percent to 8 percent, starting in 2017.

Voters approved Amendment 4, which will exempt the surviving spouses of military personnel, police officers or firefighters killed in the line of duty from having to pay local property taxes on their homes.

Voters approved Amendment 5, which will create a new Revenue Stabilization Trust Fund to be filled with oil and gas revenue and corporate taxes when those collections are higher than usual. Once the fund reaches $5 billion, up to 10 percent could be spent on construction projects and roadwork. Another portion of oil and gas money will pay down state retirement debt.

Voters rejected Amendment 6, which would have made it easier for lawmakers to tap into protected funds when the state faces financial troubles.

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