New Orleans City Council approves millage changes, budget

Chris Miller
November 21, 2019 - 11:00 am

The New Orleans City Council today voted to approve a budget that includes some changes to tax rates, to adjust for recent property re-appraisals.

The city believes it has pulled off a balancing act that will keep tax collections neutral overall, although some property owners are likely to experience higher total tax payments in 2020.

The city has several different millages, some dedicated to specific portions of the budget.

"The key millages that are being rolled forward at a hundred percent, which is their maximum authorized millage rate, are police/fire, Sewerage and Water board, city alimony, and the NHIF fund, the Neighborhood Housing Improvement Fund," said Chief Administrative Officer Gilbert Montano.

Montano said some other millages, like capital improvements, economic development, and others, are being rolled back even further, to even things out.

"What the council's going to do is adjust the millage rate for various tax recipient agencies and dedicated millages so the rollback remains exactly where it is for the total amount that the city controls," said political analyst Clancy DuBos. But he points out that only affects taxes under direct control of the city council. Other government agencies in the city have taxing authority, too.

"Any increase in people's property taxes in New Orleans will not be because of the city council," DuBos explained. "It will be because tax recipient agencies, like the school board."

The Orleans Parish School Board voted Tuesday to roll forward its millage back to the full rate. It will mean an additional $24.3 million in revenue for the system.

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