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Augusta commissioners to discuss millage rate, vacancy today

Sunday, Aug 24, 2014 6:19 PM
Last updated Monday, Aug 25, 2014 7:49 AM
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The Augusta Commission will have another chance to set the county’s mill rate today after it rejected an ordinance on third reading calling for a 1.75-mill increase last week.

After nearly two hours of debate, during which commissioners received biting criticism from residents who packed the commission chambers, a motion to pass the ordinance failed. Commissioners Bill Fennoy, Corey Johnson, Bill Lockett and Marion Williams voted in favor of the increase.

Commissioners were left with two options, according to city Fi­nance Director Donna Williams. The first was to restart the process and revisit the proposal two weeks later.

Commissioners elected instead to hold a called meeting Monday at 11:30 a.m. to adopt and approve a mill rate that will then be submitted to the Georgia Department of Revenue.

Compromise might not come easy. Some commissioners, including District 4’s Alvin Mason, vehemently opposed the increase, saying the city should look within its departments to free up additional funds.

“At some point, plans and actions have to be brought forward to address not what do we do to get out of this debt, but how do we stop getting into debt in the first place so that we don’t have this issue,” Mason said last week. “That has yet to be addressed appropriately.”

Fennoy, the District 1 commissioner, said a 1.75-mill increase wouldn’t be enough.

“I think it needs to be at 2.14 because of the needs of the city,” he said as the crowd laughed.

After the abrupt resignation of District 6 Commissioner Joe Jackson, the commission has also been tasked with appointing his replacement. The issue will be discussed at Monday’s meeting,

It is anticipated that Ben Hasan, who was elected in a July runoff as Jackson’s successor, will fill the vacancy, Johnson said.

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corgimom 08/24/14 - 08:20 pm
I have an idea to save money.

I have an idea to save money.

Get rid of DDA and Margaret Woodard, that would save a lot of money right there.

jimmymac 08/25/14 - 05:37 am

Politicians will never do anything to affect them or their cronies, relatives, girl friends, etc. They just expect taxpayers to dig a little deeper.

Little Lamb
Little Lamb 08/25/14 - 10:33 am
Wild Cards

So it seems that Alvin Mason is opposed to a millage increase. And I think the Wayne Guilfoyle is also opposed. That leaves three wild cards — Grady Smith, Donnie Smith, and Mary Davis. If two of them vote against the increase, we are spared. If two of them vote for the increase, we are *%#@&.

rebellious 08/25/14 - 12:05 pm
Disappointed but not surprised

So newly sworn in Commissioner Ben Hasan's first vote is for a tax increase. Disappointed to say the least.

No surprise Mayor Onmywayout Deke breaks the 5/5 tie with a vote to increase taxes.

That sucking sound is people moving out of this county.

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