Orleans Sheriff seeks to double property tax for additional funding
NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - The Orleans Parish Sheriff’s Office is seeking millions of dollars in new funding to address employee pay raises, new equipment, and repairs for the less than ten-year-old jail.
Sheriff Susan Hutson is asking voters to nearly double the property tax the office already collects, which is estimated to cost taxpayers an additional $87 per year.
Councilmembers on Thursday (April 13) questioned why the public has been kept in the dark about the exact use of the millage.
“My concern about the millage though is the outreach and the overall transparency of how the money will be spent,” Council Vice President Helena Moreno asked. “You had some momentum to do this if you would have attached it to what was going on with Mardi Gras, to get a campaign to where we wouldn’t be guessing, but you didn’t take advantage of that.”
“I have put this information out there time and time again,” Sheriff Hutson responded. “We’ll make sure it’s concise so that people can look through it but I have talked about this from day one.”
While council members agree that sheriff’s office employees should be paid fairly, they are worried that the public is not getting a clear picture of how the money from the millage will be spent. The sheriff admits that the campaign has not gone the way she wanted it to and that there is still work to be done to inform the public.
The millage will be on the April 29th ballot, and council members say they will continue to ask questions of the sheriff’s office.
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