SLPSB Tax Proposal Opposition Meeting
Local News

Citizens meet in opposition of SLPSB’s upcoming property tax proposition

Photo: Caroline Cosgrove answers questions concerning the St. Landry Parish School Board tax proposal during a public meeting held Wednesday at Toby’s.

Photo by FREDDIE HERPIN, Photographer

Contributing Writer

Citizens against the St. Landry Parish School Board property tax proposal met Wednesday night at Toby’s Lounge in Opelousas. The prevailing sentiments of a group of about sixty citizens who attended the meeting was to oppose the upcoming property tax proposition of the St. Landry School Board.

The property tax proposition for more than $150 million includes employee salary increases along with construction of four new schools for Kindergarten thru fourth grade. Athletic facilities will also be improved if the tax is approved, according to school officials.

If the capital outlay portion of the tax is passed, new lower elementary schools would be constructed in Opelousas, Eunice, Lawtell and the southern end of the parish.

Some speakers at the meeting suggested that current schools could be updated and repaired instead of taking on the new costs of new construction.

Another person who provided comment stated the parish needs more revenue, not an increase in property taxes.

Others persons who spoke at the meeting said that voters are not only being asked to increase property taxes, but passage of the tax would could also create a cost of living increase.

Examples of cost of living increases were mentioned that if Burger King’s property tax increases, it will be passed on to their customers as a cost of doing business.

If a landlord’s property tax increases, that increase would be passed on to their tenants.

It was suggested by one speaker that a plan could be made on how to address increasing students’ ability to read, write and add due to many students not being able to do these tasks which is something new buildings won’t achieve according the some members of the audience.

Generally the people at the meeting stated they are looking for accountability by the school board and want to be sure current funds are managed properly.

They added they want to support teachers and students however want to see improved results in schools. Discipline, violence and lack of respect for authority in the schools needs to be addressed by the school board which was brought up during the meeting.

Voting on the SLPSB property tax will be on March 26, 2022 with early voting held from March 12-19.