Livingston Parish looking to crack down on duplicate tax exemptions
LIVINGSTON – Officials in Livingston Parish are looking to get tough on people who may be claiming illegal tax exemptions. The Parish Assessor, Jeff Taylor, says an initial study shows 1,200 homestead exemptions, around 3.2 percent, could be duplicated.
“In the state of Louisiana, you can only have one homestead,” said Taylor. “So it could be that people have filed under maiden names, or a wife's name or middle name.”
The company Assessure Systems LLC has the technology to find out who is claiming these duplicate exemptions. If used, the Parish could make homeowners pay up, starting with what they owe from 2017 and 2018.
“If people are getting by without paying taxes, then we need to bring that out and we need to fix that,” said Taylor.
During Thursday night’s Livingston Parish School Board meeting, the board passed a Cooperative Endeavor Agreement to use Assessure’s services. The agreement is between the board, the Sheriff and Assessors Office, and the Parish Council. The Parish Council still has to okay that agreement.
If they do, collecting the amount owed for duplicate homestead exemptions could amount up to $900,000. Taylor says the Parish needs that money.
“The school board, and the sheriff’s office, the parish, library, recreation, drainage, I feel like they probably all need the money.”