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April 10, 2021

Bogalusa Council Deals With Tax Exemption, Tax Collections, and Burials

At their meeting on April 6, 2021, the Bogalusa City Council considered the adoption of seven Resolutions, introduced three Ordinances (Public Hearings and voting on April 20th), held Public Hearings and voted on three Ordinances, heard from the public during Public Participation, and received Administrative Remarks from Mayor Wendy Perrette. 

The two hour and eighteen minutes meeting was largely devoted to three issues:

  • Consideration of Resolutions to deny or approve a $53,000,000.00 Industrial Tax Exemption for International Paper (24 minutes and 17 seconds, beginning at 4:30 into video of the meeting). After considerable discussion and clarification of the Resolution, the Council voted to approve the exemption application
  • Consideration of a contract for between Avenu Insights & Analytics, Inc. and the City of Bogalusa for the collection of taxes (35 minutes and 27 seconds (beginning at 49:35 into video of the meeting). During discussion of the Ordinance, it was noted that businesses were apparently operating without a license and without paying taxes and resulting in loss of revenue to the City. In the end, the Council approved the Ordinance.
  • Consideration of an Ordinance amending previous ordinances pertaining to burials in the Bogalusa and Ponemah cemeteries (45 minutes and 50 seconds, beginning at 1:14:10 into video of the meeting). Since the 2016 flood that caused considerable damage at Bogalusa Cemetery, the Council has received reports and passed ordinances and amendments regulating burials. However, issues continue to arise. In the end, the Council voted to table the Ordinance until they receive a report from the Cemetery Commission.

Also of note (beginning at 29:30 into video of the meeting), was a description by Councilman Mark Irvin of the Resolution supporting the Washington Parish Government's grant application that is planned to extend and straighten Willis Avenue to Sullivan Drive, install two roundabouts, and improve  traffic to and from International Paper. The Council approved the Resolution.

Mayor Perrette (beginning at 2:01:50 into video of the meeting) noted that the City, for the first time since 1990, has not requested or made a Revenue Anticipation Loan. She also reported that the City received $2.7 million from the Cares Act, monies that is being used for sewer improvements and the rest reserved as a cushion.  

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