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Chamber supporting sheriff’s millage

By Leonard Gray / L’Observateur / June 15, 1998

LAPLACE – The 17.08-mill proposal for the St. John Parish Sheriff’s Officeis quickly gaining acceptance in the business and industry community.

The renewal of 16.08 mills for operation of the sheriff’s office gained theendorsement this week of the St. John Business Association on Wednesdayand The Chamber River Region Council on Thursday.

An additional 1-mill is being added to support the employee retirement fund.

The election is set July 18.

Sheriff Wayne L. Jones explained, as the parish expands with morepopulation and more business, the need for more and better police protection continues to grow.

“We would be devastated if this didn’t pass,” Jones added.

The income generated by the 16.08 mills makes up approximately one-halfof the sheriff’s budget, the rest derived from fees, fines and grant money occasionally received.

“It’s so crucial to the operation of the sheriff’s office,” he continued.

One mill generates $142,000, translating into $2,425,360, for the total millage proposal before the voters.

The sheriff’s office receives no sales tax revenue and perhaps $330,000 in grants last year, which went to place 11 more employees in the department, most of them on the streets as road deputies.

The one-mill addition to the sheriff’s millage for the retirement fund would replace money now taken from the sheriff’s general fund. As thismillage has no “sunset clause,” it will never again have to come before the public, unless an increase is ever desired.

This translates into fixed, assured income, allowing for long-term planning and security for the retirement funds, according to Jones.

“I’ve been hearing good things on the street,” the sheriff continued. “I feelreally good but I don’t want to take it for granted. This is so important.”

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