Macarthur photo.jpg

Kate MacArthur, president and chief executive officer of the Ascension Economic Development Corp.

DONALDSONVILLE — The BASF corporation is seeking an industrial tax exemption in Ascension Parish if it brings an $803 million expansion to its chemical plant in Geismar.

Kate MacArthur, chief executive officer of the Ascension Parish Economic Development Corp., told Ascension Parish School Board members Tuesday that the Geismar site is competing with other sites globally and that the site selection is expected to be made in the second quarter of the year.

The expansion would generate $55.8 million in property taxes over the 30-year life of the project for the School Board and $5.2 million in sales tax revenues for the board during the construction period, MacArthur said.

Under the state's industrial tax exemption program, the BASF project would be exempt from 80 percent of property taxes for five years, renewable to 10 years.

The School Board, which will vote on the BASF tax exemption request on Jan. 21, would forgo $43 million in property taxes over the total 10 years. 

The request was approved in December by the Ascension Parish Council and early in January by Sheriff Bobby Webre, MacArthur said after Tuesday's meeting.

Also on Tuesday, the School Board approved an agreement with the Ascension Parish government to jointly provide a new carpool line on the grounds of Galvez Primary School on Henderson Bayou Road in Prairieville to ease traffic congestion there. 

The school district and the parish are jointly working on solutions for traffic woes at some of the older schools which have limited entrance driveways.

Email Ellyn Couvillion at ecouvillion@theadvocate.com.