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Downtown Development District defends tax renewal on October ballot

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BATON ROUGE - The Downtown Development District has put the 10 mill property tax for downtown on the October ballot.

The tax is up for renewal every five years and voters will make the decision on whether to renew it or not on Oct. 24. Since a larger area of downtown has been incorporated into the district, more people will have to pay the tax if it's renewed. About 2,000 people will have a say so at the polls. 

Some business owners like Taylor Blanche, who is one of the owners of Spanish Town Market are on the fence about supporting the tax.

"We're paying more money. And we're not feeling what taxes are actually being paid for," said Blanche.

But Davis Rhorer with the DDD told News 2 that if the tax is renewed, the additional $86,000 a year they get will go toward the already $497,000 that comes in annually. The tax money will be dedicated to prodividing affordable housing for downtown as well as grants, marketing and research.

In the next two weeks, the DDD will host a meeting at their downtown office at 247 Florida street for more information on the tax.


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