Commissioners in two Louisiana parishes voted this week to withdraw their approval of bond elections slated for May 1.
The Vermilion Parish Police Jury voted unanimously on Monday to postpone the vote on a 5.7 mill property tax increase that would support $20 million of bonds for coastal protection projects.
Vermilion Parish President Wayne Touchet said state Sen. Nick Gautreaux, D-Meaux, was concerned the wording of the proposal was not clear. Rather than spend $68,000 on an election that could be disputed later, Touchet said, the county decided to delay the vote until October, when the issue should be resolved.
If the election is held Oct. 1 in conjunction with the primary runoff election, Touchet said, the state will pay for half of its cost.
Vermilion’s general obligation debt is rated A-plus by Standard & Poor’s.
In Caddo Parish, commissioners pulled from the May 1 ballot a question on a 1.95 mill tax increase for debt service on $25 million of 20-year bonds
Officials said residents complained that the parish had sufficient money without issuing bonds or increasing the property tax rate.
Caddo Parish has collected $30 million since 2008 from natural gas royalties for production on its land. Commissioners earlier had said they would lower property taxes dedicated to building maintenance, mosquito control, and juvenile justice facilities if voters approved the increase in the tax that was earmarked for debt service.
Caddo Parish’s GOs are rated AA-plus by Standard & Poor’s and Aa3 by Moody’s Investors Service.