Lafayette

Sep 23, 2013 9:10 PM by Tina Macias

Education committee discusses new tax possibilities

Lafayette Parish voters could be asked to support new sales and property taxes next year that would fund school facility upgrades, the turnaround plan and employee pay increases.

The Lafayette Community Education Plan Committee took a look at five different tax options tonight. Their top choice was a new half-cent sales tax and 30-mill property tax that would fund $384 million in facility upgrades, $6.4 million in employee raises and $27.2 million in turnaround plan projects.

They did not vote to make a formal recommendation to the Lafayette Parish School Board, but will ask the board to weigh in on the options on Oct. 16, and could also ask for public input. The committee will vote on a formal recommendation Oct. 28 with enough time for a tax proposal to make it on the May 2014 ballot.

In 2011, voters rejected a 25-mill property tax proposal to fund a $560 million bond for facility upgrades.

The committee voted on which options they favored tonight, which were:
1. 1/2 cent sales tax and 20-mill property tax
-Turnaround Plan: $27.2 million funded by 1/2 cent sales tax and 2 mills
- Employee Pay Increases: $6.4 million funded by 4 mills
- Facilities: $384 million bond funded by 14 mills

2. 1/2 cent sales tax and 18-mill property tax
-Turnaround Plan: $24 million funded by 1/2 cent sales tax
- Employee Pay Increases: $6.4 million funded by 4 mills
- Facilities: $384 million bond funded by 14 mills

3. 1/2 cent sales tax and 16-mill property tax
-Turnaround Plan: $24 million funded by 1/2 cent sales tax
- Employee Pay Increases: $6.4 million funded by 4 mills
- Facilities: $329 million bond funded by 12 mills

4. 25-mill property tax
-Turnaround Plan: $25.6 million funded by 16 mills
- Employee Pay Increases: $6.4 million funded by 4 mills
- Facilities: $137 million bond funded by 5 mills

5. 16-mill property tax
-Turnaround Plan: $16 million funded by 10 mills
- Employee Pay Increases: $6.4 million funded by 4 mills
- Facilities: $54.9 million bond funded by 2 mills

An extra mill would increase property taxes by $2.50 annually for homeowner wth a $100,000 home.

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