- Elliott Stonecipher
UPDATE #3 … May 23, 2017, 5:10 P.M.
Early word from the Shreveport City Council meeting, still underway, is that Democrat Mayor Ollie Tyler’s property tax confection / concoction passed with the expected 5-2 Council vote.
All four Democrat members – Stephanie Lynch, Jeff Everson, Willie Bradford, and Jerry Bowman – were joined by Republican James Flurry in supporting the now-certain “roll-forward” – meaning, increase – of a key City of Shreveport property tax millage.
Republicans Michael Corbin and Oliver Jenkins were the lone votes against the tax hike.
Given the nature of the property tax(es?) at issue, a two-thirds vote – five Council members – was required for passage.
Tyler had dropped specifics of the vote on some media outlets late last Friday afternoon, leaving opponents almost no time to oppose this latest mayoral attempt to raise City taxes and “fees.”
Shreveport property owners already pay the highest combination of city, school board and other parish property taxes in Louisiana … and many other locales in a broader 200-mile radius.
The late Friday notice, picked up by KTBS-TV and posted on its website, was only for a roll-forward of one property tax millage, from 17.29-mills to 17.65-mills, generating $530,000 for more Tyler and City Council spending.
Yesterday and today, however, Tyler threw out mentions of a different list of other tax issues which had not been previously presented to the public, much less debated.
The confusion stemming from the gross mishandling of the issue by Tyler was reflected in competing news stories last night and today. Reporting media outlets reached wholly different conclusions about the wacky combo of revenue issues Tyler threw out at the last minute.
It is unclear to me that the way Tyler submitted the tax vote notice to the public and the Council is even legal, but no one at City Hall or elsewhere cares to check.
To KSLA-TV, Tyler surprisingly blamed the (her) confusion on an “overestimation” of property tax assessments by Caddo Parish Tax Assessor Charles Henington, Jr.
City Council sources assure me such is not at all the case, noting that Henington personally explained such in a previous Council meeting.
Tyler and CAO Brian Crawford are already hard at work in their pursuit of a minor, minor, minor league professional basketball team … and a new sports arena / complex to go with it.
© 2017 Elliott Stonecipher … ALL RIGHTS RESERVED