Recommendations for St. Charles and St. John the Baptist Parishes Propositions on the April 21 Ballot
Susan Poag / The Times-Picayune
Updated: Tuesday, April 17, 2012, 5:12 PM
The Times-Picayune makes the following recommendations for Saturday's ballot.
Voters across metro New Orleans will consider several local offices and propositions Saturday.
St. Charles Parish
Hospital proposition - To issue $15 million in bonds for construction - Yes
Money from this bond issue, which would be repaid over 20 years using an existing 3.16 mill property tax dedicated to hospital maintenance, would be used to build an after-hours clinic, an outpatient center and a cardiac catheter lab, among other improvements.
School Board Proposition - To issue $45 million in bonds for construction - Yes
This bond issue would be used to expand and renovate several schools. The bonds would be paid off using 5.86 mills in property tax that the district already levies for debt service. The district expects the expansions and renovations to reduce the number of portable buildings used in the district from 74 to 10, with two of those left as classroom space.
St. John the Baptist Parish
Proposition 1 - To renew a 1 mill property tax for disabled citizens - Yes
This tax is dedicated to maintenance and operational expenses of the St. John ARC for disabled residents. The tax is expected to generate around $360,000 per year.
Proposition 2 - To renew a 1 mill property tax for senior citizens - Yes
This tax is dedicated to the maintenance and operational expenses for St. John's senior citizens center and programs for senior citizens operated by the Council on Aging. The tax is expected to generate around $360,000 per year.
Proposition 3 - To dedicate a .75 mill property tax for animal control - Yes
This proposition would dedicate .75 of an existing road and lighting district millage to maintain and improve animal control services and the animal shelter. The tax is expected to generate $275,000 per year. Animal control is now financed through public works, user fees and mosquito control.
Proposition 4 - To dedicate 2.25 mills in property tax for recreation - Yes
This tax would dedicate 2.25 mills in property tax, coming from a combination of the road lighting district tax and debt service, and put it toward recreation. The Recreation Department is now funded by video poker revenue and transfers from other departments. The rededicated tax is expected to generate around $830,000 per year to be used to maintain, operate and improve recreational facilities.
Road Lighting - To levy 3.83 mills in property tax for lighting - Yes
This proposition seeks to reduce the current 4.83 mill property tax to 3.83 mills for 10 years. The remaining tax is expected to generate $1.4 million per year for providing, maintaining and operating electric lights in public places and on streets.
School Board - To issue $11.6 million in bonds for construction - Yes
Money from this bond issue would be used to pay for several repairs and renovations to the district's school and office buildings, including roof work, electrical repairs, drainage, security improvements, technology and code compliance upgrades. District officials also plan to buy 10 buses. The bonds would be repaid over 20 years using an existing 2 mill property tax.