Lafayette Police Chief Comes Out Against Sheriff’s Tax Proposal
Count Lafayette Chief of Police Toby Aguillard as a "No" vote on Saturday for the half cent sales tax proposal placed on the ballot by Lafayette Parish Sheriff Mark Garber.
In a letter sent to employees of the Lafayette Police Department and the Lafayette Police Department Community Relations Committee Members, Chief Aguillard notes he does "not believe that the current tax proposal is the vehicle needed to get...increased pay, benefits, training, and equipment to all of our Lafayette Parish law enforcement officers."
BELOW is Chief Aguillard's letter:
Election week is finally upon us and I wanted all of you to know that for the following reasons I am not supporting the sheriff's "law enforcement" tax. Early conversations that I had with Sheriff Garber about his tax initiative involved the possibility of the Lafayette Police Department sharing a significant portion of the tax revenue. We discussed using the revenue to develop a new pay plan for the Lafayette Police Department and increasing the amount of officers on the LPD force.
However, as of today's date the sheriff has failed to enter an agreement with the Lafayette Consolidated Government regarding splitting the tax revenue. The current tax proposal and the sheriff's covenant only allow for a small percentage of the revenue to be provided to the Lafayette Police Department, while the lion's share of the tax revenue will be collected from within the city limits of Lafayette. As Chief of the Lafayette Police Department, my primary duty is towards my employees and the city taxpayers who support us. I believe that the proceeds from the tax initiative to the Lafayette Police Department should be in proportion to that revenue that the city of Lafayette taxpayers are expected to provide. The current sheriff's proposal is simply not even close.
Know that I share the sheriff's enthusiasm for increasing pay, benefits, training, and equipment to all of our Lafayette Parish law enforcement officers. Although I do not believe that the current tax proposal is the vehicle needed to get us there, I am committed to working with Sheriff Garber and others to get this goal accomplished.
Chief of Police
The proposal is a half cent sales tax for the entire Parish of Lafayette, including residents of all municipalities.
This proposal is different from what is currently on the books: a one cent sales tax in the unincorporated areas of Lafayette.