Algiers property owners are about to live an old maxim: If something looks too good to be true, it probably is.
In this case, it’s that annual property-tax bill that recently arrived.
Algiers residents who noticed the bill was a little less than a year ago can stop smiling. Turns out 6.35 mills for flood control was left off.
That means property owners soon will be getting a second bill – about $78 for a $200,000 home.
A spokesman for Orleans Parish Assessor Erroll Williams confirmed “a second Christmas present will be going out,” to Algiers property owners.
He referred further questions to the city’s Department of Finance because the city, not the assessor, sends out tax bills and collects taxes.
The 6.35 mills, part of a larger flood protection fee for Algiers that is allocated to the Southeast Louisiana Flood Protection Authority-West, was renewed in the Nov. 21 general election. The ballot stated the charge would begin in January 2016.
Mayor Mitch Landrieu’s office, which oversees the Department of Finance, said the city couldn’t put the renewed tax on the bill because the flood authority didn’t fulfill all its requirements for giving notice. The state Legislative Auditor told the city it wasn’t approved to bill for or collect the tax.
The city and flood authority are working to get state approval to send supplemental bills, and the authority will pay for the extra work involved, city spokesman Hayne Rainey said.*
The flood protection authority board held a special meeting Dec. 2 passing a resolution to recognize the election results and notify the Secretary of State.
John Monzon, regional director of the authority, explained in an email, “Due to the election’s close proximity to the mailing of the tax bills, the millage portion in Algiers did not make the initial bills in time. However, we have been in touch with the city of New Orleans and they will issue an updated tax bill with the millage in it.”
Staff writer Charles Maldonado contributed to this report.
*Comment from the city was added after initial publication.