Though Augusta Commission member Marion Williams wants city employees to live in Augusta-Richmond County so they’ll contribute to the tax base, the Super District 9 representative is again behind on his contributions to the general fund.
Williams, who has lately blasted Augusta employees for living elsewhere, owes $3,654.53 in taxes on three Augusta properties, according to tax records. The amounts cover tax bills from 2012 and 2013 and include $672.74 in penalties and interest, though records showed Williams has made partial payments on all six tax bills.
The payments are due in November of each year. A search of tax records on arctax.com showed no other properties listed in a commissioner’s name with unpaid bills.
It’s not the first time for Williams, a retired railroad worker and preacher. In 2011, Tax Commissioner Steven Kendrick took the properties to auction to secure payment. Williams also fell behind in 2007 and had delinquent bills when he ran for commission in 1999, according to previous Augusta Chronicle reports.
Williams said city staffers likely spread the word Monday about his unpaid taxes because he angered them by criticizing those who don’t live in Augusta.
“I don’t give a rat tail about that. It makes me happy when they’re mad,” he said.
He said he’d already made arrangements with Kendrick to pay up.
According to a report presented to the city’s Administrative Services committee Monday at Williams’ request, about 900 of the city’s 2,770 active, full-time employees, or 32.5 percent, live outside of Augusta. They include the staffs of elected officials and garner about 35 percent of the payroll, about $33.6 million.
Commissioner Bill Lockett questioned the significance of the report.
“What we are doing is we are assuming that because you live in another county, you’re not spending money in this county,” he said.
In other committee business Monday, commissioners:
• Agreed for a committee made up of Lockett and commissioners Mary Davis, Wayne Guilfoyle and Alvin Mason to meet this week to review and tweak the job description a firm will use in its search for a new city administrator. Davis said she thought the description likely needed a revised
salary range, mandatory certifications and degrees and perhaps fewer required years of service in certain areas.
• Approved Lockett’s proposal to make Augusta an “Age-Friendly Community,” a designation granted by the American Association of Retired Persons that would be Georgia’s second.
• Tabled a bid award and delayed progress on the city’s new bus maintenance facility on Highway 56 after several commissioners questioned environmental conditions at the site, its proximity to existing bus routes and the procurement process.
• Received as information a report on progress toward creating a bus route to Fort Gordon. Mason, a retired Army sergeant and mayoral candidate whose district includes part of the post, said revised estimates of about 4,000 jobs created by the arrival of the Army Cyber Command make the route even more important.