Good politicians often get applause when they speak, but East Baton Rouge Parish Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome got an ovation before she uttered a word of her annual state-of-the-city address to the Rotary Club of Baton Rouge on Wednesday.
The audience cheered when Broome was introduced as the mayor who passed a roads tax last month. Taxes don’t usually get applause, either, especially from a room full of business executives. That enthusiasm, we assume, reflects the eagerness of many Baton Rougeans to ease the city’s traffic congestion, something the new half-cent sales tax is supposed to do.
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Of course, the mayor didn’t pass the tax alone. She had help from key stakeholders — and a lot of voters who are tired of spending so much time behind the wheel.
Broome pledged that the city will be ready to start implementing road improvements when the new tax starts being collected in April.
In bumper-to-bumper Baton Rouge, that relief can’t come quickly enough.