Sen. Jonathan Perry was able to get two bills passed through the House and Senate dealing with the two hotel and motel taxes that has driven up the cost of hotel and motel rooms in Abbeville.
Sen. Perry wrote Sen. Bill 600, dealing with terminating the occupancy tax on hotel rooms, motel rooms and camping facilities in the parish.
The bill, which was recently signed by Gov. Bobby Jindal, will let voters of Vermilion Parish decide if they want hotels and camping facilities in the parish to collect three percent on hotel rooms. That money collected is then given to different non-profit youth organizations in the parish by the Vermilion Parish Tourist Commission.
Abbeville gets 28 percent of the money collected while Kaplan gets 23 percent and North Vermilion Youth Athletic Associations is handed 14 percent. Gueydan, Erath, Delcambre and Maurice all collect an average of six percent.
Over the last six years, it has meant thousands of dollars to youth leagues.
Hotel, motel and campground owners have complained that the youth tax is increasing their room or campsite charges, making it hard to attract business.
If parish voters vote to get rid of the occupancy tax, then it would lower the rooms and campsites by a few dollars.
Jindal signed Senate Bill 562 on Thursday. The bill will let voters decide if they want to get rid of this occupancy tax. This tax is levied on hotel rooms, motel rooms and campsites only in Abbeville to help fund the Abbeville Film and Visitors Commission District.
Only voters in Abbeville will decide if the film and visitors commission remains or goes away.
The earliest possible chance for voters to decide on these two bills is Nov. 6 for the presidential and congressional election. The Abbeville council is going to have to vote on when it wants to put the film commission election on the ballot.
The Police Jury has the decision on when to let voters decide the youth and recreation tax.