DONALDSONVILLE — Ascension Parish Sheriff Jeff Wiley rolled forward his office’s property tax rate Wednesday, netting an additional $119,820 in revenue from rising values based on the 2012 reassessment.
The action means the sheriff’s property tax will remain at 14.48 mills as in 2011.
Wiley said the property tax is expected to bring in a total of nearly $13.35 million in 2012. Wiley said the roll forward is needed to keep up with increasing costs.
“The cost of fuel, the cost of personnel, the cost of vehicles, the cost of doing business, frankly, is not doing anything but going up, and so we feel like it’s a necessary decision,” Wiley said during a hearing in his office at the parish courthouse in Donaldsonville.
A few staff members and a news reporter were the only ones present during the morning hearing where the sheriff formally rolled the millage forward with a stroke of pen and notarization by his staff. Wiley said he had not heard any concerns from the public about the rolling forward decision.
Louisiana taxing jurisdictions must adjust their property tax rates after parishwide reassessments conducted every fourth year, adjusting down with rising taxable values so millages produce the same level of revenue as the year before.
Based on reassessment figures from the parish Assessor’s Office, the sheriff had to adjust millage rates down from 14.48 mills to 14.35 mills.
But jurisdictions also have the option to roll forward, back to the old maximum rate, thereby gaining additional revenue.
Rolling forward by parish and municipal governments requires two-thirds votes of their councils, boards or police juries. But sheriffs and assessors, for example, retain sole authority to roll forward.
Taxable assessed value in the sheriff’s law enforcement district rose from $875.1 million to $921.7 million between 2011 and 2012, the Assessor’s Office has estimated.
According to the Assessor’s Office, taxable assessed value in Ascension attributable to the reassessment of what is called real property has been around 2 percent parishwide.
Real property, consisting of buildings and land used for both residential and commercial purposes, is reassessed every four years. It is subject to roll forward provisions in the state constitution.