LAFAYETTE, La. (KLFY) – Soon, Downtown Lafayette residents will vote on a tax millage. It’s a big decision to make in regards to financially committing to keep the downtown area thriving.

The millage was first introduced in 1993. The 15-year millage was renewed last in 2007. If voted yes, this will be the second renewal. Anita Begnaud with the Downtown Development Authority (DDA) says the millage tax renewal covers a substantial amount of cost of running the organization. “It is to fund the downtown development authority which works every day to enhance and improve the downtown district.”

The average home value in downtown Lafayette is worth $170,000 dollars. If voted yes, that homeowner would pay about $12 per month.

Begnaud explained, “If you think of the cost of a few coffees at our coffee shops or lunch downtown that’s what homeowners are paying per month to fund the downtown development district.” The millage only applies to homeowners who live in the downtown taxing district. Which includes the first block of the Freetown-Port Rico, LaPlace and Elmhurst Park neighborhoods.

Martin Arceneux lives in Freetown-Port Rico. He’s been living in the area for 23 years. He voted yes the first time the millage was introduced. This go-round, there are concerns. “From what I understand it’s going towards the executive staff. How are they justifying it?”

Even with recent failed tax renewals, Begnaud is confident residents will vote yes.

Election day is Saturday, April 30th. Early voting dates are April 16-April 23, excluding Sunday.

Polling locations are listed below:

  • Domingue Rec Center
  • Lafayette Consolidated Government building
  • Lafayette Middle School

To read the language of the tax proposition, visit our post on the April 30 ballot.