If anyone in Shreveport got a lump of coal for Christmas, they can blame it on the Shreveport City Council vote on Dec 22.
By a unanimous vote the Council authorized a special election on April 28 of 2018 to for six ad valorem tax renewals.
Five of these were last authorized in a 2013 election for five years. They expire at the end of this year (2017) and must be authorized again by the voters.
These include taxes for streets, SPAR, salaries, police & fire personnel and city employee benefits.
The Louisiana Legislative Auditor is requiring the city, along with Baton Rouge, to now obtain voter approval to continue a Police Three Platoon System ad valorem tax.
All together the six taxes total 7,359 mills, with an estimated annual revenue of over $11 million dollars. Basically the taxes will maintain basic city services.
The street improvement tax of 1.120 mills is dedicated to improving, repairing, and maintaining city streets. This tax should generate $1,720,999 per year.
The SPAR tax is to operate, supply and maintain its recreational facilities. The .083 mills should generate $1,275,383 annually.
The salary tax of 1.120 should generate $1,720,999 for city employee wages and salaries.
The 1.120 mil tax is for police and fire personnel and the allowances for uniforms and equipment for both departments.
The ad valorem renewal of 1.69 mills will provide over $2.5 million per year for the City’s portion of pensions, employee life insurance and hospitalization plan for city employees.
The Police Three Platoon System tax of 1.470 will generate $2,258,811 annually. This tax is designed to provide the police department with adequate staffing.
The millages and rates on the April ballot will be the same as previous years. Voters will see an increase in taxes if their real estate is assessed at a higher amount in 2018. Likewise, if a 2018 re-assessment is lower, then there will be a tax reduction.
The tax election could become a referendum on Shreveport Mayor Tyler’s performance. No doubt the election results will be a marker to determine if she will seek re-election in the fall of next year.
And citizens can expect to be the subject of a well oiled campaign next April to pass all the renewals.
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