LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC-TV) – Voters in Calcasieu Parish rejected two tax proposals Saturday, forcing the police jury to reexamine the issues at a future date.
Voters did not approve of a 10-year, 5.75-mill property tax that would have gone to the upkeep of the parish courthouse, jailhouse and other public buildings.
Voters defeated this measure 57% to 43%.
The man who pushed the hardest for the passage of the sales tax, Parish Administrator Bryan Beam, said the issue will have to be revisited.
"The Police Jury understands that the environment is challenging right now for passage of any tax, and the election results are reflective of that," said Beam. "We are still required by state law to maintain courthouse and jail facilities, so the issue will have to be revisited."
Voters also rejected a sales tax proposal that would have been used to support roads and waste collection and disposal efforts in the unincorporated areas of Calcasieu Parish. This measure failed by just eight votes.
"With the defeat of the sales tax, there is no provision for funding garbage collection in these areas beyond 2010. With the vote being so close, we will need to gauge public input regarding how to move forward from here," said Beam.
Voters in the Ward 4 fire district did approve a renewal of a 8.65-mill maintenance tax. This measure passed overwhelmingly 83% to 16%.
According to the Louisiana Secretary of State, voter turnout was just under seven percent.
THE FOLLOWING IS A LIST OF THE VOTING RESULTS:
*CALCASIEU PROPERTY TAX RENEWAL/COURTHOUSE MAINTENANCE
3691 YES 43.33 PERCENT
4827 NO 56.67 PERCENT
*1.5% SALES TAX PROPOSAL/WASTE COLLECTION AND DISPOSAL
1457 YES 49.86 PERCENT
1465 NO 50.14 PERCENT
*WARD FOUR /FIRE DEPARTMENT TAX RENEWAL
195 YES 83.33 PERCENT
39 NO 16.67 PERCENT