May 18, 2017 11:38 AM

Mayor intends to seek voter approval for a penny for road improvements if bill becomes law

The House Municipal, Parochial and Cultural Affairs Committee gave unanimous approval to Sen. Jonathan Perry's SB238 on Thursday morning, moving the town of Duson's request to raise its local sales tax rate one step closer to becoming law.

Jonathan Perry
Photo by Robin May

The committee voted 14-0 to approve the town's request, one of nine bills during its 42-minute hearing on which there were no dissenting votes cast on any of the issues considered.

Duson Mayor Johnny Thibodeaux tells The Independent that it is his intention to convince the town council to put a 10-year, one-cent sales tax measure on the ballot this fall if Perry's bill clears its final hurdle on the House floor next week.

"We've got 3.22 miles of gravel roads in the town and we need to replace those," Thibodeaux explains. He spoke to The Independent by phone on Thursday morning.

"Some of the people who've looked at the roads south of Cameron Street (US 90) say it could take $1 million just to fix those roads," Thibodeaux continues.

The bill was not amended by the committee, meaning if it wins expected approval on the House floor without amendment, it will go straight to Gov. John Bel Edwards for his signature.

There is a fall election scheduled to fill the unexpired term of state treasurer created when John Neely Kennedy was elected to the Senate last year. That election will be held in October with a run-off (if needed) set for November. If the town sets the election for Oct. 14, the cost of the election for it would be minimal. If the town opts for a vote on Nov. 18 and there is no run-off for treasurer, the town would have to pay the full cost of holding that election.

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