ST. FRANCISVILLE – Parish President Kevin Couhig introduced a plan at the West Feliciana Parish Council meeting Monday that would reallocate a portion of existing tax millages that are up for renewal this year to fund two new parish recreation, health and wellness centers.
Couhig said the plan would not raise taxes, but would take up to 2 mills from existing allocations for the parish’s hospital and health and social services to fund the new facilities.
The funds generated by the reallocation would support a wellness center on the hospital’s campus, and another facility for recreation at the parish’s sports park.
Couhig said the facilities would be funded by taking up to 1.5 mills of the 2 mills already dedicated to the hospital and another ½ mill for funds allocated for public health facilities and social services.
Currently, parish voters will have a choice to renew existing millage allocations on the Nov. 21 ballot of 2 mills for the hospital, 1.5 mills for health and social services and 8.89 mills for public roads, bridges, buildings, grounds and recreation.
Under Couhig’s proposal, the reallocation would provide for a ½ mill for the hospital, 1 mill for health and social services and the third allocation would not change. A fourth proposition for 2 mills would be added to the ballot for the purpose of funding the construction, operation and maintenance of the proposed wellness and the recreation centers.
“This is an opportunity for the council and my administration to work together to spend time and work on some ideas,” Couhig said. “I encourage every person on the council to meet with me and discuss their ideas.”
He commended the West Feliciana Parish Hospital Board for being willing to give up a percentage of its millage.
The council also voted to set public hearings at its Aug. 10 meeting at 5:30 p.m. to discuss another attempt at amending the Home Rule Charter or possibly putting it up again before the parish’s voters.
At the Aug. 10 meeting, the council will also consider a proposal by the Lambert Gravel Co. to settle the dispute over land at the Mississippi River front that is at the heart of a lawsuit that has cost the parish in excess of $700,000.