Parks And Rec Asking For Millage – Lafayette Live
The Lafayette Consolidated Government's Parks and Recreation department is considering a millage that would increase taxes for citizens within the city of Lafayette.
The Parks and Rec department has been operating for many years without the benefit of direct tax, relying instead on being subsidized to the tune of around $4 million a year from the LCGs general fund. The Parks and Rec department hope the tax would allow the department to become more self sufficient.
Lafayette City-Parish President Joey Durel explained why the Parks and Rec department cannot continue to live off of the LCG general fund forever to "Mornings with Ken and Bernie" during his weekly "Lafayette Live" segment,
That's 4 million dollars that's coming out of our general fund that used to go to cleaning ditches, fixing roads, and cutting grass, among other things. What they've heard me say several times is that at some point that's going to have to end, because there are things that we HAVE to do and we don't HAVE to do Parks and Rec.
The Parks and Rec department has grown considerably over the last several years, a growth which Durel contends has not always been met with adequate fiscal planning.
In 1961 we had 1 golf course and around 10 areas of responsibility, rec centers, parks, things like that. Today we have 3 golf courses and 35 areas of responsibility. You might say, "Why would you build all that if you don't have the money for it?" These things were built because voters voted for it. They built it, but there was no money for operations. That's what I call running government like a politician and not a business.
The millage is still currently being deliberated by the City Council. If the millage is approved, it will come up for citizen vote on April 6.