Sulphur mayor explains veto of bond issue

Sulphur mayor explains veto of bond issue

SULPHUR, LA (KPLC) - Sulphur Mayor Chris Duncan vetoed an ordinance that would allow a $15 million bond issue for various city projects.

For now the city can pay for such projects without the bond issue, Duncan says. On Monday, the City Council will decide at a special meeting whether to override the veto.

Duncan says he takes seriously his obligation to be a good steward of taxpayers' money - that, he says, is why he vetoed a $15 million bond issue for city projects.

"Just the interest alone on $15 million based on 5-percent projection is $3.3 million dollars. That's a lot of interest," said Duncan.

For now he says the city should pay as it goes.

"If we can work on these projects right now, and not hold anything up, or not hold up the things that we have going on, we need to use our money. But then when you get to the point where you can't use the money, then you go out for the bonds."

Plus, he says because of the payback requirements of the bond debt, it could cause the city serious financial problems if sales tax revenues are lower than projected.

"There's a lot of people driving into town that were supposed to be here permanently working, and staying in our community, that's not staying in our community," said Duncan. "You have like Lafayette, New Iberia, Morgan City, Port Arthur, Bridge City, and all them, and they're driving in for work. They're stopping at a park 'n ride and then they're driving back. They're no taxes coming in from these people because they're coming in and they're leaving."

Duncan says for now, Sulphur can pay as they go on projects, which he considers more frugal. Plus he says there are cheaper sources of financing.

Three council members - Dru Ellender, Randy Favre and Stuart Moss - are at the National League of Cities in Charlotte, North Carolina. We called them for comment. Moss responded, saying: "We plan to override the mayor on Monday."

The special council meeting is at 5 p.m. Monday.

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