Governor Edwards To Deny Industrial Tax Exemptions For Folgers Coffee
FOLGERS ITEP DENIED - Governor John Bel Edwards has announced he will use his constitutional authority to deny the Industrial Tax Exemption Program applications by the Folgers Coffee company that were recently advanced by the state Board of Commerce and Industry. The governor’s rejection could prompt a judge to lift a court injunction that is currently blocking Orleans Parish from collecting on a multi-million dollar property tax bill that Folgers has-- so far avoided paying. The organization Together New Orleans’ estimates there is roughly $4.3 million worth of tax revenue at stake for Orleans Parish public schools.
The decades-old ITEP program once gave large corporations 100% tax exemptions on their properties with no requirements that they create jobs or show some kind of benefit to the community. Property taxes are a primary source of revenue for local governments to pay for public schools, law enforcement, road maintenance and other community services.
During his first term as governor, Edwards issued executive orders to reform the program, a key part was to give local governments authority to approve or deny ITEP applications.