Posted: Dec 5, 2013 11:30 AM
Updated: Dec 5, 2013 12:11 PM
BATON ROUGE - Metro Councilman John Delgado said he will sponsor an ordinance for property owners that request to become a part of the city of Baton Rouge.
The announcement comes on the heels of a report prepared by LSU economists that said the proposed city of St. George will result in higher taxes and diminished services in the area.
Delgado said, "Taxes are low now because we are all working together. It's like a married couple. You spend less together because you combine your resources. If you divorce, it costs both people more."
According to Delgado, sales taxes would also remain at 9 percent if commercial property owners joined the city. He said Baker, Zachary and Central all have a higher sales tax and that the same would happen in St. George.
In October East Baton Rouge Metro Councilwoman Denise Marcelle said if St. George formed Baton Rouge would face a financial crossroads. She believed Baton Rouge should annex the St. George area before incorporation took away the city-parish's tax revenue.
"I don't think we need to be picking things apart; I think we need to be bringing things together," Marcelle said.
Property adjacent to the existing city limits can be annexed if the majority of taxpayers in that area petition for the addition and the council approves it, according to the city-parish Plan of Government.
City of St. George supporters must collect more than 18,000 signatures for residents to vote whether they want to create a new city.