Facing budget calamity and furloughed workforce, City officials to decide on a $25M corporate giveaway

Together New Orleans to hold informational session about the issue over Zoom on Friday, December 4th at 12pm

Register to attend here

New Orleans - In the midst of a severe budget crisis, facing cuts to its workforce and services as deep as any in the City's history, New Orleans officials will be deciding soon whether to approve a costly corporate tax exemption, with only murky connections to economic development.  

Folgers Coffee is asking the New Orleans City Council, School Board and Sheriff to be exempted from paying property taxes on $162 million of its property through 2029 under the Industrial Tax Exemption Program (ITEP). 

The request, if granted, would cost New Orleans schools and city services $25 million through 2029 and $12 million in 2021 alone.

Together New Orleans will be holding a one-hour informational session this Friday about this issue and how rejecting the Folger request can help end city worker furloughs and restore funding cuts to city services.

The informational session will be held over Zoom on Friday, December 4th at 12pm.

To attend, please register by clicking here.

The Folgers request is not related to covid-19 or to any prospective project Folgers is hoping to bring to the city. Folgers is seeking "incentives" for several projects that already have been completed, some of them several years ago.

"This is an issue about which everyone who cares about our city and our schools needs to be informed," Together New Orleans said in a statement.

Register to attend the informational session here.


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Watch the video "Why Louisiana stays poor"

With all Louisiana's wealth in natural resources and industry, WHY DO WE STAY SO POOR?


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TNO releases impact & equity analysis of 2020 property assessments

Download the study.

Together New Orleans has released an impact and equity analysis of the 2020 property assessments called "The Good, The Bad and the Just-Plain-Not-Legal."

The analysis looked at two questions:
#1) IMPACT: How seriously will the impact of the assessment increasing be and what people and neighborhoods will be most severely affected?

#2) FAIRNESS: To what extent have the assessment increases been applied consistently across different values and types of property?

The study found that:

  • Several thousand New Orleans households are likely to face unsustainable increases to their property taxes, which have the potential to result in displacement of those families; and
  • The assessments valued low- and moderate-value properties far more aggressively than high-value properties.
  • The assessments under-value vacant land and parking lots
  • The assessments treat as "exempt" $155 million in industrial property which has no tax exemption and is therefore taxable

For more information, please email [email protected]

Download the report.


Next Summer Seminar: Alanah Odoms Hebert on how to cut LA incarceration in half


Click here to RSVP.

How we can reduce Louisiana's incarceration by 50%
... and save $800 million.

BACKGROUND READING: “Blueprint for Smart Justice: Louisiana,” ACLU, 2018.

Reading is online here.

Tuesday, August 13, 6 to 7pm
Mt. Zion UMC, 2722 Louisiana

Download a pdf event flier here.

TNO discovers big underpayment of corporate property taxes

Folgers Coffee could owe New Orleans more than $1M

The Folgers Coffee Co. may need to cough up well over $1 million in back property taxes to the city after exemptions for its manufacturing plants in New Orleans East were recently scrapped by the state.

The state Board of Commerce and Industry, which grants exemptions under the state Industrial Tax Exemption Program, or ITEP, in October rejected Folgers’ late application to renew two exemptions it received for those plants in 2012.

No one from Folgers or its parent company, the Ohio-based J.M. Smucker Co., appeared at that time to make the case in person for the board to consider Folgers' application after the deadline, board members said. And in February, when a company official did show up to appeal the denial, members declined to hear the appeal.

For full story, click here.


Next TNO Summer Issues Seminar tackles affordable housing


Tuesday, July 30th, 6 to 7pm. Click here to RSVP.

Download a pdf event flier here.

TNO Launches Summer Issues Seminars with session on Cash Bail


To RSVP to attend on Tuesday, June 25th, click here.

The reading for this session is the Vera Institute's report, "Paid in Full: A Plan to End Money Injustice in New Orleans" (2019). (Click to download.)

Download a printable pdf of the flier here.

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