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Mayor's office takes public's questions about stormwater utility fee; many attendees say they're unhappy

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BATON ROUGE - The Main Library was packed Thursday night as many had questions about the proposed stormwater utility fee. Many attendees, like Joy Womack, said a lot of questions were asked, but very few were answered. 

"They never would answer a question directly. We deserve answers. It's not a fee; it's a tax," Womack told WBRZ. 

Womack says she is concerned about how much this will cost her and other taxpayers.

Pennie May Landry also opposes the fee. They both think the decision should be made by the public, not just a vote by the EBR Metro Council. 

"Given that we're the ones going to pay the fee, we should be able to vote on this," Landry said. 

"If we're going to pay the taxes, why can't we vote? Can someone answer that question for me?" Womack said.

Womack says the meeting was supposed to give more information on the utility fee. She says that didn't happen. 

"It was very unproductive. I've seen people walking out, I've seen people very unhappy. People do not appreciate how they were treated in there tonight," Womack said. 

Council Member Rowdy Gaudet was in attendance. He told WBRZ he doesn't know how he will vote on the fee just yet, but he looks forward to the next meeting. 

The next public meeting will take place Monday, Oct. 17 from 6:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at Pride-Chaneyville Branch Library, 13600 Port Hudson-Pride Road.

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