Truckers and other residents in Orleans Parish may soon be
spared their vehicle tax bills.
The Louisiana Senate unanimously approved a bill June 17
that would eliminate the New Orleans property tax on motor vehicles and
Sponsored by Rep. Jeff Arnold, D-Algiers, HB187 now heads
back to the House for approval of Senate changes. If approved there, it would
go to Gov. Kathleen Blanco to be signed into law.
The bill would prohibit cities and parishes in the state
from levying a property tax on motor vehicles. An amendment to the bill, added
on the Senate floor, would include trailers and semi-trailers in the exemption.
Currently, local governments are allowed to adopt the tax,
but only New Orleans has done so, The Times-Picayune reported.
The city levied more than $7 million in property taxes on
motor vehicles last year and collected about $5.2 million, which was
distributed among various local governments.
If signed into law, the proposed constitutional amendment
would still need to gain approval of voters in a statewide election scheduled
for Nov. 2006, leaving about 16 months for the city and state lawmakers to come
up with alternative sources for lost revenue.