Lafayette city-parish councilman Brandon Shelvin threw a curve ball tonight. Shelvin tossed-out an idea that at least one person was happy to give an opinion about. The councilman talked about an additional one-cent sales tax. He wanted to know the impact it would have on the consolidated budget. "There's nothing concrete. I'm not getting ready to propose a one cent sales tax," says Shelvin.
LCG chief administrative officer Dee Stanley says the 1985 sales tax generates $31.5 million city wide. "In the unincorporated areas of the parish sheriff's office the law enforcement district that number is approximately $5 million."
Shelvin says in the past consolidated budget there was a $5 million shortfall that had to be covered. Plus, LCG is feeling the pinch of federal mandates being passed from the federal government. "We are going to have to find was to have the necessary resources to be able to continue to take care of our citizens.
Shelvin says whether it be a half-cent or a quarter cent - it doesn't matter. This dialogue is about thinking ahead. "So, we won't be reactive when we have a $10 or $15 million shortfall. Start now and have a discussion and be proactive."
Dale Brasseaux lives in Lafayette Parish. Brasseaux admits to not being in support of millages. "I voted against all millages and pushed for the millages to be defeated." Brasseaux says millages are levied on property owners. He wants a fair way to share the cost - such as a sales tax. "Let the people that love this city and spend their money give us a little to help pay for our people."