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Lafayette Clerk of Court proposes separating courthouse-jail tax to pay for new courthouse


LAFAYETTE, Louisiana — Lafayette Parish's Clerk of Court Louis Perret is looking for a pot of money to set aside to build a new state district courthouse in downtown Lafayette.

The Advocate reports ( that Perret wants local officials to separate the courthouse-jail tax.

The tax was imposed 30 years ago when Lafayette's jail was on the seventh floor of the courthouse. The jail moved in 1984 after the Correctional Center was completed nearby.

Perret says the 50-year-old courthouse in its current state lacks safety features needed to keep inmates, many of them violent, from getting too close to victims and witnesses during trials and hearings.

In 2006, voters by a two-to-one margin said no to new taxes that would have paid for a new courthouse.

Information from: The Advocate,

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