BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) — Ships moving through channels and passes of Port Fourchon are becoming increasingly important to Lafourche Parish's tax collections.

The Daily Comet of Thibodaux reports that watercraft made up a third of Lafourche Parish's property tax base for 2011.

Those watercraft are primarily vessels that service and supply the offshore oil industry.

Lafourche Parish Tax Assessor Mike Martin said tax figures are not available for 2012 but are expected to be about the same.

Following the most recent reassessment, Lafourche Parish had just under $750 million in taxable property. Of that, just under $250 million was industrial watercraft.