NLEP Board votes to support Caddo parks and rec millage renewal

The Board of Directors for the North Louisiana Economic Partnership (NLEP), an Accredited Economic Development Organization, voted to endorse a Caddo Parish millage renewal to support the Parish’s Parks and Recreation Department at its October 17th Board Meeting. On November 6, Caddo Parish voters will be asked to renew an existing .83 Public Facilities and Recreation millage.

“Considering that this is a renewal of an existing tax and it supports an important quality of life asset for Caddo Parish, the NLEP Board voted unanimously to endorse the property tax renewal,” said Committee Chair James Moore, III, NLEP Government Relations Committee.

The Parish of Caddo relies on this property tax to fund operations for 14 park sites, educational programming and to support over 150 community and organizational events held at Parish parks year round. The millage provides 98 percent of the Parks and Recreation Department’s operational funding.

“Parks and recreational options are important for our quality of life and in turn for economic development,” said NLEP President Scott Martinez. “Companies looking to locate or expand their operations want communities with a good quality of life, because it enhances their ability to recruit the skilled workforce that they need.”

The average homeowner in Caddo Parish pays $10 a year toward this .83 mill property tax. The Public Facilities and Recreation millage is designed to renew every ten years and will expire on December 31, 2018.  Renewing the existing millage would continue funding the Parish’s parks operations for another ten years.  This tax has been in place for more than 30 years.

“It is important to note that this is not a new tax or increase,” said Caddo Parish Administrator Woodrow Wilson, Jr. “It is a continuation of what it is already in place. This millage allows the Parish to provide a level of service and improvements that enhance the quality of life for our citizens.”

In addition to Parish sponsored events such as Owl Night, Hooked on Fishing, and Bugs, Bats and Bones, Parks and Recreation partners with numerous groups to provide space and support for events such as Christmas on Caddo Fireworks Celebration, Gusher Days, summer camps, 5k races and trail runs.

The millage renewal has been endorsed by NLEP, the Greater Shreveport Chamber of Commerce, the Committee of 100, and the Shreveport Bossier African-American Chamber of Commerce.