JEANERETTE, La. (KLFY)- Jeanerette Mayor Carol Bourgeois Jr. said the city’s upcoming audit report will reveal two key findings: many people are not paying their utility bills or property taxes.
“Our revenue stream comes primarily from property taxes and also our water,” Mayor Bourgeois said.
Without those funds, there’s less money to fund the city’s police force, public works department and fire department.
“The funds are definitely needed to operate day to day,” Mayor Bourgeois added.
Officials estimate the city failed to collect roughly $277,000 in delinquent property taxes and many utility bills from residents.
Mayor Bourgeois said the city has been hosting town hall meetings and sending out notices to those who failed to pay their taxes and bills but said the city can only do so much.
“We don’t have any kind of ability to just go and knock on people’s doors,” Mayor Bourgeois said.
The mayor says the city’s financial status lies in the hands of its people.
“The responsibility is certainly for the property owner to certainly pay their taxes and also the utility to use to pay their water bills,” Mayor Bourgeois told News 10.
The city’s official audit has not been released yet by the fiscal administrator.
Mayor Bourgeois and the Board of Aldermen will have a special meeting Monday to discuss the city’s audit report and budget.