Assessor, company fight over salt caverns - KLFY News 10

Assessor, company fight over salt caverns

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OPELOUSAS, La. (AP) - A case before the state 3rd Circuit Court of Appeals could cost St. Landry Parish about $500,000 a year in tax revenue.

The Daily World reports the issue boils down to whether a hole in the ground is an improvement for tax purposes.

Parish Assessor Rhyn Duplechain and Spectra Energy, which owns natural gas storage containers drilled into a salt dome near Port Barre, agree the containers are worth $119.6 million.

What they disagree on is the nature of the caverns.

Duplechain ruled they are improvements, taxed at 15% of assessed value.

Spectra argues, and the Louisiana Tax Commission has agreed, they are merely land features such as ponds and should be taxed at a 10% rate.

An appeal of the LTC's ruling is before the court.

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