The Senate is expected to vote on the bill in the next day or two because the session ends on Thursday.
Before it becomes law, the House still needs to vote and approve it.
Sen. Jonathan Perry introduced Sen. Bill 106 this session in Baton Rouge. The bill is to repeal a two-percent recreation tax placed on hotels, motels and RV parks in the parish.
A two-percent charge is added to hotel/motel rates in Vermilion Parish. Every few months, the money is distributed to different municipalities and youth organizations in the parish.
Last week Sen. Perry pulled the bill to change wording and then brought back to the Municipal Committee last week, where it was approved.
While all of the town’s municipalities voted to repeal the recreation tax, not all citizens of the parish are in favor of removing the recreation tax from the books.
The Police Jury voted against it.
Also, Abbeville citizen Elbert Dawson is a not a fan of removing the tax that helps youth leagues in the parish.
“In many cities and parishes around the state and around the country as well, this tax exists in one form or another,” Dawson said. “It provides revenue for recreation that relieves the tax burden for the residents,” Dawson said. “The tourist industry brings in many tax dollars in sale taxes revenue But, additional people put added burdens on electrical, water, sewage, garbage and other relayed systems.”
Dawson predicts people will continue to stay in hotels in the parish despite if the tax is on the books or not.
“ If the (hotel) owners think the repealing of this tax will be cost effective for everyone, ask them will they cut their rates?” Dawson said. “Organized recreation is a form of education, so when will we start investing in our future? Are we willing to shoot ourselves in the foot or just shoot our children in the back?”
Dawson said instead of letting councilmen, aldermen or the tourist commission decide if the tax should be removed, why not let the voters decide?
“If our business people believe in freedom of choice, why not let the people decide if the tax is important to have. Maybe I am missing something, but I am only a voter and home owner,” Dawson said.