Drainage Tax Renewal

A 3.58 millage tax generates about $7.9 million for drainage maintenance and improvements.

Posted: Nov 13, 2021 4:11 PM
Updated: Nov 13, 2021 4:15 PM

LAFAYETTE, La. - Tomorrow is election day in Lafayette parish, among other matters voters will be deciding on four parish-wide millages. Here is a deep dive into one of those millages that is guaranteed to effect the entire parish. 

On this weekends ballot is a 3.58 mills drainage tax renewal that generates almost $8 million dollars that pays for drainage maintenance and improvements.

A millage that's been in Lafayette's books since 1969 now has a slight increase on your taxes.

"Without this money we have no money to fund our drainage work," said Angelle. 

Due to the fact that Lafayette's property vaules have gone down parish council members elected for a higher tax rate to keep revenues the same.

"So it's going to generate roughly $7.9 million dollars and that's for drainage operations, maintenance, some improvements to the drainage systems," said Angelle. 

Essentially this drainage tax renewal says that Lafayette parish will collect the taxes of 3.58 mills on all property subject to taxation for 10 years from 2023 to 2032. Anyone with a home valued at $200,000 dollars would pay about $45 dollars in property taxes per year. About 24 cents more than they're paying for the current tax that's up for renewal.

One area that could use some serious help with it's drainage improvements is the Vermillion river. For years it's been clogged with trash which increase flooding in the area.

Residents like Claire Phillips and Ethan Trangmar are in favor of the renewal. They both say it'll be beneficial to those effected by flooding in South Louisiana.

"That's a major issue in a lot of the cities down here in Lafayette, New Iberia. They have a lot of issues with flooding and that causes problems for people because loose property," said Phillips. 

"Certain areas drain way better than others and sometimes peoples property and their houses are destroyed due to flooding so I thinks it's important," said Trangmar. 

What about the residents who aren't in favor? Some locals don't want thier taxes to pay up, they'd rather something like federal grants cough up the cash.

"There's no guarantee that we're going to get that grant money. When you think back to 2016 and the situation we had then. The massive and devastating floods we had back then, I think it's just a testiment to show that we need a robust drainage department," said Angelle. 

The other parish wide millages include an airport tax and parish library renewal and rededicating public health funds to parish fire protection. 

If you would like to cast your vote on any of these matters you can do so this Saturday from 7 am to 8 pm at your voting precinct.

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