More than 300 officials throughout Louisiana sign letter backing local ITEP control

Baton Rouge economy
ExxonMobil’s refinery in Baton Rouge. (Photo by means of Tim Mueller)

More than 300 native elected officers from all over Louisiana have signed an open letter to the Legislature, urging lawmakers to reinforce native keep an eye on of native belongings tax breaks, backers of a proposed state constitutional modification say. 

Senate Bill 151 by means of Sen. Rogers Pope, R-Denham Springs, would ensure the correct of native sheriffs, college forums, parishes and municipalities to approve or deny granting tax breaks to producers throughout the state’s Industrial Tax Exemption Program. Gov. John Bel Edwards’ govt order recently offers them that proper, even though a long term governor may take it away. 

“For 86 years, Louisiana has been the only state in the nation to grant an unelected, statewide board the authority to exempt industry from paying local property taxes without the approval of local governments,” the letter states. “We ask you to vote in support of Senate Bill 151 to restore our basic right to control our local tax dollars.”

Backers have deliberate a information convention for midday Tuesday at the state Capitol steps. Capital Region supporters come with:

  • Mayor Sharon Weston Broome, East Baton Rouge Parish;
  • President Riley Berthelot Jr., West Baton Rouge Parish;
  • President Major Thibaut, Pointe Coupee Parish;
  • President Kenny Havard, West Feliciana Parish;
  • Mayor Janis Landry, Slaughter;
  • Mayor Edwin Reeves, Plaquemine;
  • Mayor Jonathan Taylor, Livingston;
  • Mayor Rhett Pourciau, Livonia;
  • Mayor Cornell Dukes, New Roads;
  • Mayor David Toups, Addis.

Business teams say the native approval procedure is just too unsure and encourages firms taking into consideration funding in Louisiana to appear in other places. Local officers say virtually all programs had been authorized, which presentations native keep an eye on isn’t chasing producers away. 

In its authentic shape, SB151 would have preserved the present approval gadget. Senators amended the invoice to take out the particular laws and come with most effective the native approval requirement, even though that model has now not but been put to a vote.

Stephen Waguespack, who leads the Louisiana Association of Business and Industry, stays staunchly antagonistic to the invoice. 

“There’s always going to be continuing dialogue with local government, with state government, with economic developers, to do what’s best for the state,” Waguespack stated in a up to date interview. “That’s been the tradition of the industrial tax exemption since the 1930s.”

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