On the Ballot

Against the French Quarter Sales Tax: Why the Bureau of Governmental Research is advising voters to vote ‘no.’

By Peyton LoCicero

Source: WGNO

April 22, 2021

NEW ORLEANS (WGNO) For our viewers heading to the polls this weekend, there’s a new report out that you should know about before casting your ballot.

The French Quarter Sales Tax is on Saturday’s ballot and the report from the Bureau of Governmental Research is against the sales tax proposal. The Bureau of Governmental Research is saying that it sees the need in the French Quarter for additional resources but, the City Administration and French Quarter Management District have not resolved their disagreement over control of future tax revenue and that leaves voters without spending and accountability plans to determine whether the tax will fulfill its intended purposes.

This report analyzes Saturday’s sales tax proposal to fund supplemental police and other public safety services in the French Quarter.

Normally, this type of report is released sooner but, the negotiations between the City and the French Quarter Management District have caused the report to take longer to finalize.

If approved, the French Quarter Sales Tax would take effect July 1 and remain in place for five years. It would generate an estimated $2 million to $2.5 million in the first 12 months.

When analyzing the April 24 proposition, the Bureau of Governmental Research considered four questions; focusing on the efficiency and effectiveness of using public resources.

  1. Have the parties carefully planned how they will spend the tax revenue, and have they displayed responsible financial stewardship and accountability for taxpayer dollars?
  2. Is the proposed tax an acceptable way to fund the purposes?
  3. Is the tax appropriately sized?
  4. Is there evidence indicating the tax would result in effective outcomes?

If you want to get some background on this before casting your ballot, we have the full report and a brief summary.

The Bureau of Governmental Research is a private non-profit that prepares information for voters.
They do these reports objectively, from a nonpartisan perspective, so that voters are educated on what they are voting on.

On this matter, they are against the idea of a French Quarter Sales Tax.

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