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BATON ROUGE- Metro-council members failed to strip funding from the Council on Aging in Baton Rouge Tuesday. Republican Buddy Amoroso wanted the senior-citizen group to be solely funded by a tax hike voters approved in November.

"I'm disappointed we gave them $872,000 from the budget," said Amoroso after his proposal failed. "I tried to get that money transfered over to the general fund so the new mayor could have discretion over it."

The group fell under public scrutiny after the tax hike passed, according to reports. Its critics accused the organization of misleading voters and violating laws regulating the non-profit group for its political activities.

Amoroso's failed attempt to cut the group's funding was one of the last actions taken by the metro-council before members approved next year's budget.

The city-parish will spend only slightly more than the current year. In the document, economists say strong sales tax collections are keeping Baton Rouge coffers flush.

Next year, officials expect a drop in property tax collections because the parish has so many flood damaged houses now worth much less.

"I think everybody is crossing their fingers, hoping we're not going to take a terrible hit when property taxes actually go out," said Amoroso.

Some officials have suggested tapping the parishes rainy day fund if money gets tight.

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