St. Landry

Oct 18, 2013 7:39 PM by Allison Bourne-Vanneck

"A Smooth Ride Home" Sales Tax For St. Landry Parish?

Road improvements in St. Landry Parish may be coming for residents if a new sales tax gets the green light in the Oct. 19 election.

The tax, called "A Smooth Ride Home," would create an additional two-cent sales tax in unincorporated areas of the parish.

Residents like 68-year-old Charles Ned say he'll support the new sales tax. He says his dusty road hasn't been paved in about fifty years.

"It has really been an inconvenience," Ned said. "We are out door people we like to be on the outside and enjoy barbecue or drink coffee or what have you, and with the condition of the road we are not able to enjoy any of those activities."

Ned says the dust has even led to health issues. He and his neighbor Mitchell Stelly both support the new sales tax, and say it's time for their road and others to get fixed.

"In the years have passed, they have passed a tax or two and some works been done, and not as much of what I'm sure, we've all expected to come through," Mitchell Stelly said. "But maybe with this extra little boost, it'll come through."

If passed, the revenue boost is expected to generate 7.8 million dollars for road improvements. Parish President Bill Fontenot says this tax is different from Racino and Transportation Tax funds.

"None of this money in this referendum can be used for anything other than roads, can't be used for all these other functions," Parish President Bill Fontenot said. "This will be a law created by the vote of the people. It is not a promise it's a law," he said.

If St. Landry residents vote in favor of the new sales tax, the parish says roadwork could begin as early as next summer.

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