At the most recent meeting of the Beauregard Parish School Board (BPSB) the board met to discuss and recommend action regarding the pending sales tax settlement with Packaging Corporation of America (PCA).

BPSB announced that they will make their decision at their next financial meeting in November concerning the budget and the staggering  $35,826.73 monthly payment that BPSB agreed to pay for the next 18 months, which totals 644,881.10. Although it was on the agenda, School Board President David Vidrine emphasized that the offset “has not begun” and that the board was “still not ready to pay.”

BPSB voted to accept the proposal at the September meeting to avoid nearly $200,000 in additional interest payments. Vidrine explained BPSB’s dilemma with the money. “Unlike other entities once we collect the sales/use tax we have to disperse it,” he said.

When asked for more information about the financial meeting the previous Monday, and why no action would be taken at the Thursday meeting Vidrine said, “We want to take a look at the budget. I still don’t know if we are ready to propose anything. We are still talking to PCA.” Vidrine the board was still working on a plan to handle the situation. “We will try to reach the best solution we can,” he said.

Vidrine emphasized that the whole situation was a “long term problem,” and that BPSB was just as concerned as the community is about the whole situation. He said he and other members of the board met with PCA representatives earlier in the week.

In what was described as a positive meeting, Vidrine explained that PCA is implementing a more hands-on approach to how they handle their taxes, and how it affects the surrounding community, so a similar situation does not happen in the future.

“I don’t think that if they come to us in the future about an audit that it will be nearly as dramatic,” said Vidrine.

Superintendent Tim Cooley said, “I think the key is that the meeting opened a line of communication between us and that entity, which will be useful in the future.”
According to Vidrine, the PCA representatives explained to BPSB that they are trying to remedy old practices done by the former Boise mill.

For more information contact the Beauregard Parish School Board at 337-463-5551