Jul 2, 2012 8:30 AM by AP
LAFAYETTE, La. (AP) - The search for money to pay for enhanced police patrols in downtown Lafayette has sparked talk about a new tax for the area.
City-Parish Councilman Brandon Shelvin, who represents downtown, tells The Advocate he is exploring a possible property tax or other type of assessment on all businesses there to fund a new police precinct.
The tax could replace a controversial special security fee that had been charged only to downtown bars to help fund weekend police patrols along Jefferson Street.
Shelvin also said a new downtown precinct could offer better security in general for downtown and the surrounding neighborhoods.
The police department spends about $500,000 a year on overtime for a special police detail that works the weekend bar crowds on Jefferson Street.