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Metro Council member says he plans to vote no on Stormwater Utility Fee proposed by Mayor Broome

1 month 2 weeks 6 days ago Monday, October 17 2022 Oct 17, 2022 October 17, 2022 10:44 PM October 17, 2022 in News
Source: WBRZ

BATON ROUGE- Metro Council member Dwight Hudson told WBRZ Monday that he plans to vote against the Stormwater Utility Fee proposed by the mayor's office. 

"I have a philosophical issue that we would put something on somebody's property tax bill without having a vote on it," Hudson said. 

The proposed fee is unpopular and many folks came to the Pride-Chaneyville Branch Library to voice their opinions, along with council members. The meeting was packed to standing room only, and many had to sit outside of the room where the meeting took place. 

Resident Cynthia Galmon was at the meeting, she thinks the public should be able to vote on this proposal. 

"Give the residents of East Baton Rouge Parish a chance to vote on this. Why just take it before the council and have the council make a decision on something we should all have a say in? It sounds like there is a lot under the table, and we're not going to fall for it," Galmon said. 

Hudson says instead of making people pay more, some of the current tax dollars should be moved to cover stormwater drainage. 

He says in order to do that there would need to be voter approval. He told WBRZ what tax dollars can be re-evaluated. 

"Council on Aging, Library Board of Control, BREC, and Mosquito Abatement. I think those are things we should be looking at immediately," Hudson said. 

WBRZ asked Galmon about that idea. She says it is something she would consider. 

"If there is voter approval, that at least gives us an opportunity to think about it and see the ins and outs from it," Galmon said. 

Council Members Brandon Noel and Aaron Moak were at the meeting and say they want to hear from more people before they vote, but right now they need to know more before the proposal can pass. 

"I'm going to listen to these people tonight and that is going to be apart of how I make my decision. But I still have questions that need answers," Noel said. 

Moak agreed, and says he wants to hear from more people. 

"Right now, I just can't pass this. I can't vote for this right now. I want to have an input from the public, I want to hear from everyone," Moak said. 

The next public meeting about the Stormwater Utility Fee will be Oct. 18, from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Charles R. Kelly Community Center on 3535 Riley St. 

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