Official AG opinion sought on constitutionality of CATS tax
Republican Sen. Dan Claitor of Baton Rouge has asked Louisiana Attorney General Buddy Caldwell for his office to issue an official opinion on whether or not the 10.6-mill property tax that Baton Rouge and Baker voters approved in April for CATS funding is legal under Louisiana's constitution. In a five-page letter sent to Caldwell on July 5, Claitor argues that the election was not necessary and is "at odds with earlier, more constitutionally sound proposals for CATS funding." As approved by voters, Claitor says, "the CATS tax forces people owning property within the city limits of Baton Rouge and Baker to pay for services provided to untaxed parties outside the city limits and elsewhere in the parish." Claitor cites a 1974 case argued before the Louisiana Supreme Court as precedent "that a tax of this sort violates the constitutional right to equal protection." Read Claitor's complete five-page request for the opinion here. Caldwell's office has thus far already issued one opinion on the CATS tax, saying in May that the state's homestead exemption should be applied to the property tax.
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