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Property taxes on commission agenda

Monday, July 15, 2013 9:30 PM
Last updated Tuesday, July 16, 2013 12:13 AM
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Augusta Commission members could get a first crack at the state of the city’s tax digest, which it uses to set property tax rates, during Tuesday’s commission meeting.

However, several said they had received no information Monday about agenda item 37, “to discuss and approve 2013 mill rates.” Finance Director Donna Williams said she was still waiting on the finalized digest to calculate a recommended rate.

“The budget was prepared with essentially no change, a flat digest,” Williams said.

Each year, Georgia counties establish a tax rate based on the assessed value of all properties. If keeping the same rate would generate more revenue because of growth in the digest, the counties are required to notify the public about the back-door tax increase.

Commissioner Joe Jack­son said he expects City Administrator Fred Russell to recommend an outright tax increase instead.

“I guarantee Fred’s recommendation is to raise the millage,” Jackson said. “Where’s this $3 million that we’re going to recoup frompictometry? I want to see those before I even consider raising the millage.”

The city has a contract with Pictometry Inter­na­tion­al, which uses aerial photos to detect improvements to properties, some of which are untaxed.

Tax Assessor Alveno Ross, who implemented a second pictometric sweep in 2011, said the $350,000 program had captured nearly $42 million in unreported taxable properties so far, from about 18,000 parcels examined of the city’s 80,000. Year to date, the additions will garner about $465,000 in new revenue for the school board and city, Ross said.

Also Tuesday, commissioners are scheduled to:

• Hold a 4:30 p.m. closed-door meeting with attorneys

• Consider a vote to “ratify” a Feb. 19 vote held in open session to terminate the city’s contract with Mobility Transit

• Consider approving a new contract with McDonald Transit to run the city bus service

• Get an update from Rec­reation, Parks and Fa­cilities Di­rector Bob Levine on a plan to repair and improve Riverwalk Augusta

• Receive a legal opinion on the city’s employment of both Equal Employment Opportunity and Disadvantaged Business Enterprise coordinators, in potential conflict with the city charter

• Approve a resolution placing Richmond County Sheriff’s Office reserve deputies and rescue workers under workers’ compensation

Comments (17) Add comment
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corgimom
28204
Points
corgimom 07/15/13 - 10:03 pm
1
4
BOHICA, folks, be prepared!

BOHICA, folks, be prepared!

RoadkiII
6445
Points
RoadkiII 07/16/13 - 04:10 am
7
2
Agenda

1. Raise taxes
2. Decide which commissioner makes the most money on bus service change.
3. Declare the riverwalk safe and needs no improvements.
4. Adjourn meeting.
5. Go to IHOP in Evans for coffee. Its safer there.

GnipGnop
11543
Points
GnipGnop 07/16/13 - 07:08 am
6
2
More taxes in ARC?

Say it isn't so? Why should this year be different than any other? My taxes have went up 300% over the last 10 years why stop now?

Little Lamb
43943
Points
Little Lamb 07/16/13 - 08:15 am
6
1
Great plan from him who does not worry

This is a great way to run a city: put the most important item of the year on the agenda at the last minute and provide commissioners with absolutely no material to review regarding what the new digest is, what the budget is, what current and projected cash flow is, nor other pertinent information.

I hope commissioners table all discussions Tuesday until the tax office provides them information to review ahead of time.

lifelongresident
1317
Points
lifelongresident 07/16/13 - 08:20 am
0
0
GO GET'EM TAX'EM FRED....GET
Unpublished

GO GET'EM TAX'EM FRED....GET THAT MONEY TO WASTE ON ANOTHER TEE CENTER......

Augusta resident
1368
Points
Augusta resident 07/16/13 - 08:32 am
6
2
SPLOST

We were told to vote yes on SPLOST or our taxes would go up, too many people fell for it. Cancel SPLOST before raising taxes!!!

nocnoc
38642
Points
nocnoc 07/16/13 - 09:05 am
6
1
What will happen when enough Taxpayers leave ARC?

Because of too many taxes, the political BS of steering tax money to certain areas downtown and the Power Brokers working to funnel tax money in to projects that they benefit from.

corgimom
28204
Points
corgimom 07/16/13 - 11:06 am
4
2
Nocnoc, Augusta will go

Nocnoc, Augusta will go bankrupt.

It is coming, it's inevitable.

The old City of Augusta was going to go BK, that's why they consolidated, but just like individuals, if you keep doing what you're doing, the bankrupcy is inevitable.

dichotomy
30718
Points
dichotomy 07/16/13 - 11:08 am
4
2
Oh Yeh......incoming message

Oh Yeh......incoming message from Fred and the Downtown Clowns......."we've got your 8% sales tax and your $306 garbage fees and we are coming for your gold teeth and your first born now. Thanks SUCKERS".

So we spent $350,000 to raise $465,000......net gain $115,000......not even enough to BEGIN renovating Paine's taxpayer funded golf course.

But Fred has to figure out SOME WAY to pay back the money he has obligated on "future" SPLOST initiatives that MAY NOT BE APPROVED so you can BET we are getting a tax increase.

You should not only SHOP IN NORTH AUGUSTA, YOU SHOULD CONSIDER MOVING TO NORTH AUGUSTA. ESPECIALLY IF YOU LIVE IN SOUTH AUGUSTA WHERE THEY KEEP RAISING YOUR TAXES TO PAY FOR THEIR DOWNTOWN FOOLISHNESS AND GIVE you NOTHING. Little "you" because THAT IS WHAT YOU ARE TO THEM.

Notice there is NOTHING coming from Fred and our illustrious commissioners and wannabe mayors about doing away with our ILLEGAL DUAL PROPERTY TAX AND APPRAISAL SYSTEM and EQUALIZING PROPERTY TAXES AND FEES.

They are really good when it comes to raising taxes, fees, and GIVING OUR MONEY to PRIVATE ENTITIES AND INDIVIDUALS.....but they are not worth a fiddler's damn when it comes to solving REAL problems and inequities.

PUT THE GUY WHO RUNS MOSQUITO CONTROL IN CHARGE OF OUR BUDGET. HE IS APPARENTLY THE ONLY AUGUSTA GOVERNMENT OFFICIAL WHO CAN SAVE MONEY. Apparently there is ONE diamond in that lump of coal down by the river.

dichotomy
30718
Points
dichotomy 07/16/13 - 11:12 am
3
2
Oh, I forgot........THE RAIN

Oh, I forgot........THE RAIN TAX........Thanks again SUCKERS.

Little Lamb
43943
Points
Little Lamb 07/16/13 - 11:14 am
2
1
Equalization

Dichotomy posted:

Notice there is NOTHING coming from Fred and our illustrious commissioners and wannabe mayors about doing away with our ILLEGAL DUAL PROPERTY TAX AND APPRAISAL SYSTEM and EQUALIZING PROPERTY TAXES AND FEES.

Good point. They appointed a special, blue-ribbon committee consisting of four commissioners, some financial specialists from inside the government, the tax commissioner, and who knows who else to study the current incongruent system and try to make it consistent thoughout the county. At the first meeting Susan McCord reported that the consensus in the room was that it was going to be difficult. Have they had another meeting or did they just give up?

dichotomy
30718
Points
dichotomy 07/16/13 - 11:41 am
2
1
Little Lamb......I THINK they

Little Lamb......I THINK they gave up. They came out of the last meeting and essentially said "We are too stupid to figure out how to do it". Which translates into they could not figure out how to do it and satisfy the "old city" still being subsidized for services by the suburban an rural taxpayers. I think they decided to just wait for someone to sue them and let a judge figure it out. I'm willing to help kick in for a good lawyer to do it. A citizen should not be forced into the position of paying a lawyer to sue someone who uses his tax money to defend their illegal, discriminatory, unequal tax system.

ANOTHER REASON TO MOVE OUT AND LET THEM HOLD THE BAG BY MAKING ROOM FOR MORE SECTION 8 SUBSIDIZED RESIDENTS. Maybe they can make up the difference in taxes from countyman's Starbucks and Five Guys.......oh, I forgot, I think they gave Starbucks a big tax break. But will they have to pay the RAIN TAX?

nocnoc
38642
Points
nocnoc 07/16/13 - 12:48 pm
4
1
Seriously we considered taxes, economic direction, crime,

leadership and general ARC direction prior to deciding to move out of the area.

Augusta having already lost it charter once is likely facing the same problem again. Going Multi-County is the last hope for them.

Be fore-warned Burke and Columbia Co. They'll suck you dry like a sheded snake skin.

countyman
19166
Points
countyman 07/16/13 - 02:05 pm
2
7
Sad

There's problems in Augusta similar to any other city, but the constant doom and gloom is completely over the top. The $172 million Starbucks plant is one of two $100 million denpvelopments underway in South Augusta($115 million Rockwood).

Both Columbia & Aiken counties had a stormwater fee before Richmond started the rain tax. Let's not forgot the CCBOE approved raising taxes this year already.

Evans is now the only place with a lower crime rate, but many business already in the area had previous locations in West Augusta/Aiken. Evans became the new place for some white conservatives with disposable income, and nothing more.

The irony behind the comments are too funny. The same few people always bringing up the TEE center, etc in downtown Augusta. They now want you to move to North Augusta, but don't care about the Greenjacket development. The Aiken County school board, and the Aiken County council will have to participate for the project to move forward.

showboat
306
Points
showboat 07/16/13 - 01:27 pm
0
0
We need to vote all these
Unpublished

We need to vote all these people out if they up out taxes, send Fred off in the sunset.!!!!!

Sweet son
9716
Points
Sweet son 07/16/13 - 02:54 pm
1
1
No action Commission:

Will not make any decisions on any of the agenda items I bet! Read it tomorrow right here in the AC.

gargoyle
13618
Points
gargoyle 07/16/13 - 08:24 pm
3
0
Just because your in Old City

Just because your in Old City Boundary don't mean you get the Golden ticket , A lot of people are fleeced to prop up the Downtown follies. Its hard to believe it takes a whole county to take care of 4 square miles. Personally I'm hoping for a hostile takeover by one of the surrounding county's.

GnipGnop
11543
Points
GnipGnop 07/16/13 - 08:28 pm
4
0
its not just the TEE center....

They know everything the commission touches turns to crap....or they charge the county residents a tax for something they neither want nor need...a few jobs at starbucks is not going to take the sting out of a commission and school system that, for lack of a better word, SUCK!

Gage Creed
15800
Points
Gage Creed 07/16/13 - 08:40 pm
1
0
"The $172 million Starbucks

"The $172 million Starbucks plant is one of two $100 million denpvelopments (sic) underway in South Augusta($115 million Rockwood)."

Just like RONCO...but wait there's more... (eyeroll)

lifelongresident
1317
Points
lifelongresident 07/22/13 - 08:27 am
0
0
time to raise taxes to built
Unpublished

time to raise taxes to built "ole billy" his long wante "horse barn".....HEY JOE HOW'S THAT TEE CENTER WORKING FOR YA!!!! REMEMBER YOU AND THE OTHER SUPPORTERS CLAIMED THE FAMOUS TEE CENTER WOULD MAKE AUGUSTA "THE PLACE TO GO" IN ADDITION TO REDUCING CRIME AND CREATING THOUSANDS UPON THOUSANDS OF JOBS....hey joe i see the u/e rate is up again where are the thousands of jobs your promised the citizens of rich cnty..and btw where's overall benefit to society (lower crime), and most important a question for you....if you have the tee center why would you ever need to raise property taxes?????

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