GONZALES — Ascension Parish Council members will vote next month on a proposed $124 million budget for 2013.
The estimated total is slightly lower than the original $125.8 million figure adopted last year for the 2012 fiscal year budget.
The fiscal year runs from Jan. 1 to Dec. 31.
The proposal includes total operating budget revenues of about $74.2 million, with estimated expenditures at $66.8 million.
Projected capital budget figures — which include funds for projects primarily paid for with grants and one-time bond proceeds — show revenue at $49.7 million, with expenditures of $57.1 million.
The parish plans to use part of its capital budget fund balance to make up the difference between its expected revenues and its expected expenditures.
The council introduced the item Thursday during a regular meeting.
Public hearings and votes on the 2013 budget and amendments to the 2012 budget will be held at the council’s Nov. 15 meeting in the council chambers.
Other items discussed during the meeting included:
INCENTIVE REVISION: The council approved revisions to the sales tax incentive program for a planned economic development project.
The project, dubbed Project Happy Corn, is defined by Ascension Economic Development Corp. documents as a “major expansion of an existing chemical facility” without naming the company.
AEDC President/CEO Mike Eades told council members that the revisions came after initial figures were revised upward.
“Since that time, the numbers have changed quite substantially,” Eades said.
With the changes, the capital investment profile for the project rose from $1.2 billion to $2.24 billion, Eades said.
According to the proposal, the project will create 93 direct, new full-time jobs, up from 55 jobs, with an estimated annual payroll increased from $3.2 million to $5.3 million.
An estimated 1,800 temporary construction jobs also will be created, the document reads, with a combined payroll of $510,000 over a six-month period.
With the revisions, the parish would net $44.8 million in combined tax revenues during the project’s first 10 years of operation, up from the previously reported $27.9 million, Eades said.
As part of the incentive plan, Eades said, the company would be rebated 45 cents of the parish’s 1-cent sales tax for construction and initial equipment. The rebate is valued at $4.3 million, he said.
In addition to the rebate, Eades recommended the council earmark an additional 0.05 cent in sales tax revenue to go toward AEDC’s fund, which is part of the parish government budget.
TRICK OR TREAT: The council also approved setting Halloween trick-or-treat times in unincorporated areas of the parish.
Children living outside of Donaldsonville, Gonzales and Sorrento will be allowed to trick or treat from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. Oct. 31.