LCG members address council split option

LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) - A potential split of Lafayette parish and city councils is raising concern from our viewers over what this will mean for taxpayers and will any services currently provided by city government be interrupted.

The city-parish council is not on the same page when it comes to separating legislative bodies between the city and parish.

But, no matter their differences, it's about the people of Lafayette Parish as a whole, and how they will be affected.

In a 5-3 vote Tuesday night, the ordinance to split city and parish councils was introduced and is now two weeks away from a vote that could land it on the December ballot.

William Theriot, District 9 councilman said, "Even if it does pass by this council, it will be voted down at the ballot."

Theriot is against the split. He says it's all happening too fast.

"There was not enough public input. I think we need a little more transparency with something of this magnitude."

Since Tuesday's vote, many have questioned what this means for the taxpaying citizens of the parish.

District 4 Councilman Kenneth Boudreaux says the split will give the parish and the city autonomy, something they both can benefit from.

"Being able to control their finances, ultimately control their destiny, give them their individual responsibilities over their own government", Boudreaux said.

The councilman added that services and property taxes will remain the same. 

While adding an additional member, giving both city and parish councils five representatives, will cost upwards of 30 grand, residents should gain a council person with less on his or her plate.

Boudreaux says, "I think from an attention standpoint, absolutely. Each jurisdiction would get even greater attention than they get now."

The clock is ticking, and if you're a Lafayette Parish resident and have questions or concerns about the possible split, reach out to your council member, and be sure to attend the next council meeting on July 24. Further information on the proposed ordinance can be found here (item 45).    

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