Rylie has a bubbly personality and is a bit of a show off! She decided to take the ‘sit’ to a whole new level and decided she was going to roll over for her treat! She mellows out when she is comfortable. Her favorite thing to do is follow you. She will run when you run, walk when you walk, and cuddle when you invite her into your lap. This beautiful baby is ready to be the next loving member of your family!
Following World War II, Germany was divided into occupation zones. The United States, Great Britain, the Soviet Union, and, eventually, France, were given specific zones to occupy in which they were to accept the surrender of Nazi forces and restore order. The Soviet Union occupied most of eastern Germany, while the other Allied nations occupied western Germany. The German capital of Berlin was similarly divided into four zones of occupation.
The United States response came just two days after the Soviets began their blockade. A massive airlift of supplies into West Berlin was undertaken in what was to become one of the greatest logistical efforts in history. For the Soviets, the escapade quickly became a diplomatic embarrassment. Russia looked like an international bully that was trying to starve men, women, and children into submission. And the successful American airlift merely served to accentuate the technological superiority of the United States over the Soviet Union. On May 12, 1949, the Soviets officially ended the blockade.
Hopes for ratification before the deadline next Wednesday were dashed this week when the amendment was rejected by the Illinois House and the Florida Senate, two states in which supporters felt they had a fighting chance.
Had Illinois and Florida ratified the amendment, there was at least some chance that either Oklahoma or North Carolina would have provided the final needed vote.
Prospects were far slimmer in the other nonratifying states: Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, Nevada, South Carolina, Utah and Virginia.
Phyllis Schlafly, a leader of a group called Stop-ERA, hailed the defeat of the amendment tonight, saying: ”They realized E.R.A. is dead and I think that that is an admission they have lost the battle. My feeling is that E.R.A. will take its place with the prohibition and the child labor amendments as ones which did not have enough support of the American people to be in the Constitution.”
Senator Judson Hill (R-Cobb) Chairs a Senate Finance Sub-Committee on Tax Reform, meeting today at 10 AM.
“We need to do all we can to reduce the tax burden on Georgia’s hardworking families and businesses,” said Sen. Hill. “Our goal is, in the most fiscally responsible way, to enable Georgians to keep more dollars in their pockets and make their own decisions on whether those dollars should be saved, invested or spent.”
The committee will hold several meetings before the 2017 legislative session to engage constituents, legislators and policy experts to discuss the best potential reforms to the tax code in Georgia.
The make-up of the board includes Jentezen Franklin, Senior Pastor of Free Chapel in Gainesville. Another member with Georgia ties is Ralph Reed, founder of the Christian Coalition, who ran an unsuccessful race for Lt. Governor in 2006.
According to a news release from the Trump camp, the leaders on the executive board were not asked to endorse Trump as a prerequisite for participating on the board.
“Rather,” the release states, “the formation of the board represents Donald J. Trump’s endorsement of those diverse issues important to Evangelicals and other Christians, and his desire to have access to the wise counsel of such leaders as needed.”
“I have such tremendous respect and admiration for this group and I look forward to continuing to talk about the issues important to Evangelicals, and all Americans, and the common sense solutions I will implement when I am President,” Trump said.
State officials have put Georgia politicians on notice: You can’t spend campaign funds at business clubs and similar organizations unless it’s for legitimate election expenses.
The notice came in a civil case against former Fulton County Commissioner Bill Edwards, who admitted misspending $13,836 at the Commerce Club in Atlanta. Under a settlement approved by the Georgia Government Transparency and Campaign Finance Commission Thursday, Edwards agreed to repay his campaign that amount or donate it to a charity.
Commission attorney Robert Lane told the board the ruling would come as a surprise to many politicians, who he said routinely spend campaign cash on memberships and expenses at business clubs, chambers of commerce and similar organizations.
“This will cause a lot of consternation among elected officials,” Lane said. “A lot of them do it.”
But the ruling on the Commerce Club spending may have a bigger impact on Peach State politicians.
Lane said state law requires money raised for political campaigns to be spent on “ordinary and necessary campaign expenses.” He said the commission gives candidates plenty of leeway – any expenditure calculated to improve a candidate’s chances of winning an election would qualify.
But in Edwards’ case, “there was absolutely no evidence” the Commerce Club expenses were for campaign purposes, Lane said.
Under state law – which mirrors federal law – candidates cannot use campaign cash for social club memberships, he said.
I will probably tell my clients this going forward: I would recommend not paying for dues for the Commerce Club, the Georgian Club, or wherever, out of campaign funds. But I think that reimbursement for meals and rooms used for campaign functions is okay. So if you hold your fundraiser at your club, the catering bill, room charge, etc. is probably okay to pay with campaign funds. Avoiding the possibility of an ethics complaint going forward is worth the personal expense of membership or doing away with the membership. I have no opinion on reimbursing past dues payments.
Congratulations to Attorney General Sam Olens, who was elected Vice President of the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG).
The Association’s members are the 56 state and territorial attorneys general.
The election of Olens by his fellow attorneys general occurred yesterday during the NAAG meeting in Burlington, VT. Along with being Vice President, Olens will serve on several committees including:
- Federalism/Preemption, Co-Chair
- Law Enforcement and Prosecutorial Relations Working Group, Co-Chair
- Internet Safety/Cyber Privacy and Security
- Human Trafficking
“I am honored to be elected Vice President of NAAG during the coming year,” said Olens. “I want to congratulate our newly elected President, Connecticut Attorney General George Jepsen. I look forward to working with him and my counterparts on ways to better our individual states.”
Olens also released a statement on the Supreme Court’s deadlocked 4-4 decision on President Obama’s plan to limit deportation of illegal aliens.
“The Supreme Court’s action today leaves in place a decision affirming that President Obama cannot evade the Constitution. Our nation’s laws, the separation of powers between the executive and legislative branches, and the Constitution, must be followed.”
Cobb County plans to direct game-day traffic for the new Braves stadium off I-285 and onto local streets at Northside Drive, an idea that drew shock and outrage from the Sandy Springs City Council on June 21.
“This was our nightmare,” said a visibly angry Mayor Rusty Paul, blasting the plan and saying Cobb County leaders have not returned his calls for traffic management planning. He demanded that Cobb leaders “get everybody in a room real fast…We’ve got to figure out some alternative to this.”
The news was delivered in a non-voting council work session by Jim Wilgus, Cobb’s interim transportation director. The specific topic was permission to install directional signs for the Braves’ SunTrust Park and related Battery Atlanta commercial development, which are slated to open early next year in Cobb’s Cumberland area at I-285 and I-75.
Then Wilgus dropped his bombshell: On days of games and other big events, the signs—with “dynamic” messages that change on the fly—would direct stadium-goers to get off highways one exit before Cumberland and use local streets. On 285, that exit is Sandy Springs’ Northside Drive, and traffic would route onto Powers Ferry Road and Interstate North Parkway, known locally as the “access road.” Cobb wants to put one of the signs on Powers Ferry near the Chattahoochee River.
Wilgus said the idea is to lessen congestion on highways. Mayor Paul and councilmembers noted that means increasing congestion on local streets.
“You want to take all the traffic off 285 and put it on surface streets?” asked an incredulous Councilmember Tibby DeJulio.
“We have work to do, but we are committed to collaborating with Cobb County in developing viable solutions that create a win-win scenario for both communities,” said Paul in the press release.
“Cobb County and Sandy Springs have a long history of collaborating on many projects and we plan to add traffic management around SunTrust Park to our record of success,” said Lee in the press release. “I am confident that we will end up with a plan that works in the best interest of both communities.”
Paul and Lee met along with “members of their senior team,” the press release said, adding, “The group reviewed signage, game day and public safety initiatives, with agreement that cooperative efforts have produced a strong base related to operational considerations. The group also discussed systemic issues, specifically the need for significant capital projects to alleviate traffic concerns in and around the New Northside [Drive] area in Sandy Springs.”
Proponents of Medicaid expansion claim that it’s federal money that could supplant state spending. Chief proponents of Medicaid expansion say, “if you draw down federal dollars, you can free up some of those state dollars,” implying that Georgians could save money at the expense of Washington. Arkansas’ “Private Option” proves that is not the case.
When a state expands Medicaid, it agrees to support these newly enrolled with the support of the federal government. Unfortunately, that financial support dwindles over time, and because it is a large line item in the Congressional budget, House Speaker Paul Ryan has said that it may become a key target for cuts. That would put Georgia on the hook for covering even more of the Medicaid costs for this new enrollment base.
Furthermore, proponents state that “at some point you have to look at sustainability.” Well, a massive expansion of the state’s welfare program will put “sustainability” in a whole new light.
Taxpayers in Georgia already foot a bill of more than $3 billion every year to cover health services through Medicaid, plus an additional $2 billion for services for the aged, developmentally disabled, addictive diseases, behavioral, mental and public health. Georgians currently pay for 60% of all births in this state through our current Medicaid program.
Our Medicaid costs have already grown by 40% over the last decade. With the increased enrollment through Medicaid expansion, those figures will only get worse.
“If somebody has an education and they can read when they couldn’t read before,” said the Governor. “When they have a skill that is marketable in the general community that they didn’t have before, it’s just common sense the likelihood that they’re coming back is significantly reduced and that’s good news for all of us.”
Over 8,000 inmates are educated as apart of programs every year, and can earn their high school diplomas, GED’s, or even learn a trade such as welding.
“It’s giving them jobs, but it’s also giving them hope,” said Buster Evans, the assistant commissioner for the Division of Inmate Services. “It’s giving them a skill, and we believe we’re equipping them to be successful.”
“More remarkable than even to that, is that the programs are working, they’re changing lives,” continued Gov. Deal.
Judge Henry Newkirk rejected former Georgia Insurance Commissioner John Oxendine’s bid to get ethics charges stemming from his failed 2010 campaign for governor dismissed. One of those charges dates to 2009.
Newkirk ruled that the state ethics commission should be able to adjudicate Oxendine’s case before the former longtime Georgia politician can fight the issue in court.
“Under clearly established Georgia law, any party to an administrative action must completely exhaust their administrative remedies before seeking judicial review,” Newkirk wrote.
Last week, an event staffer and I had a discussion about room access. Security surrounding a Presidential candidate being what it is, he couldn’t relent from protocol and I left the building.
There were no ill feelings. We’re looking forward to defeating Hillary Clinton and working together to elect Donald Trump as the next president of the United States. Efforts made by the media to question our unity is nonsense and has no basis in fact.
In his recent re-election campaign, District Attorney Parks White took a photo with Hartwell Police Chief Anthony Davis and several police officers to use in an election flyer.
According to the Hart County Sheriff’s Office, several citizens “called him out” for using the photo without getting permission from the city council. It’s required by Georgia election laws to have the permission of a city or county’s governing body to use such photos. In Hartwell, that’s the city council.
White said he had the permission of Chief Davis and Mayor Brandon Johnson and denies any wrongdoing, deputies said.
Local attorney Lane Fitzpatrick published an ad [in mid-May] stating that district attorney Parks White committed a felony in using a badge, emblem and photo of the Hartwell Police Department without the city council’s permission.
Last week, Fitzpatrick filed a complaint on behalf of Hartwell resident Liz Parsons seeking the arrest of the incumbent district attorney, who faces a challenge for the DA’s post from Richard Campbell Tuesday, May 24.
“Georgia Law states that no one can display the badge and emblem of a police department in any advertisement without the written permission from the local governing authority,” stated the ad paid for by Fitzpatrick in the May 12 Madison County Journal. “The Hartwell City Council did not approve his advertisement. District Attorney Parks White’s violation of the law is a felony.”
Fitzpatrick filed the request for an arrest warrant against White with the Hart County Magistrate’s Office….“He (White) sent out campaign literature with a picture of officers from the Hartwell City Police Department and the Chief of Police,” the complaint states. “He did not get permission from the City of Hartwell before the picture was made. The officers and Chief of Police are in uniform in the picture and they have on their city police patches and badges.”
The request for White’s arrest includes an affidavit from Hartwell City Manager David Aldrich.
“No request has been made from the Chief of Police to the City Council for Parks White to use the City Police Officers’ badge, patch or uniform in a political advertisement,” stated Aldrich.
Hartwell police officers are pictured with White in a recent mailout sent to Northern Judicial Circuit voters. The ad states “Officers Support Parks White….Ask a law officer who they support for district attorney.
Hartwell Chief of Police Anthony Davis is pictured standing next to White and above the two is a quote from Davis in support of White, saying White has helped “reduce crime rates,” “supported officers across the district,” “made communities safer” and “delivered swift justice for victims.”
Parks White won re-election in the May Primary with 63.67% of the vote.
Hart County Sheriff Mike Cleveland said White voluntarily surrendered at the county jail, where he was booked, then released on a $1,000 bond set by Stephens County Senior Superior Court Judge Robert Struble.
“I look forward to my day in court and being vindicated of these baseless allegations,” White said Monday.
White, who said he was surprised to learn about the warrant, declined to further discuss the charge.
White’s attorney, Mark Wiggins of Athens, said that despite the warrant White “can continue to perform the duties the people elected him to do.”
“As you know, probable cause is a whole lot different than being guilty of something and that’s all the court found at this juncture,” he said.
The case at some point will be presented to a grand jury in Hart County.
According to Secretary of State Brian Kemp’s office, the number of registered Latino voters jumped by about 20 percent in recent months; Asian Americans grew by 16 percent. However, the two voting blocs combined are still less than 5 percent of the state’s electorate.
“If they all showed up to vote, it probably wouldn’t affect the election outcome,” University of Georgia political science professor Tre Hood said.
Hood studies demographic voting trends. He said the increase in registered voters could be the result of a growing population.
“It’s not surprising that there are more Hispanics registering to vote,” he said. “We have an ever-increasing number of Hispanic citizens as a base in Georgia. Now, as to the motivations, I’m not sure at this point.”
By insisting on his ability to self-fund during the primary, Trump failed to build the kind of fundraising base that will enable him to compete on an even playing field with Clinton, said Eric Tanenblatt, a member of House Speaker Paul Ryan’s finance team and former Jeb Bush supporter.
“I was very involved in Mitt Romney’s fundraising effort in 2008, and immediately after he got out of the primary he got his team together and he said we all need to get behind John McCain, and I ended up raising more money that year for John McCain than I did for Mitt Romney by the time the election ended,” Tanenblatt said. “There wasn’t that effort with regard to the Trump campaign because the Trump campaign didn’t raise money on their own and didn’t reach out to supporters of the other candidates like donors are accustomed. Typically, the nominee is the one who is magnanimous and reaches out to the supporters of the other campaigns and unifies and works to unify the party. I don’t think that happened to the extent it should have.”
The question now, Tanenblatt said, is what Trump does going forward in terms of picking a vice-presidential candidate and what he says in public. That could determine whether his fundraising picks up or not.
“I think that says a lot about him as a candidate,” Tanenblatt said. “That’s probably the biggest decision that he’s going to make in the campaign, so that will send a signal.”
Georgia Republican Party First Vice Chair Michael McNeely may or may not have been asked to leave the backstage area at the Trump event at the Fox Theater. From Buzzfeed,
Michael McNeely, the first vice chair of the Georgia Republicans, was escorted out of Atlanta’s Fox Theatre by Secret Service after being told there was “no more room for you” by Trump campaign state director Brandon Phillips, according to a party official briefed on the incident. The official requested anonymity said they were not authorized to speak on behalf of the party.
McNeely was stopped while trying to enter an area where Trump had been greeting supporters, the sources said. Neither Phillips, the Trump campaign, nor the Georgia Republican Party returned messages seeking comment.
So, “a party official briefed on the incident” who requested anonymity. Third party rumor-mongering at best.
Due to an increase in the county’s property values, Cobb Commission Chairman Tim Lee said on Tuesday he will propose reducing the county’s tax rate by 0.5 mills, a rate commissioners are scheduled to vote on next month.
The county’s 2016 preliminary tax digest, which is the total value of all property within the county, is estimated to be 8.5 percent higher than 2015’s digest.
Due to homestead and other exemptions, the net increase in taxable properties is estimated to be about 3 percent, Lee said. The final digest is expected to be approved today by the Cobb Board of Tax Assessors.
As a result of that growth, Lee told the MDJ on Tuesday he is set to propose a general fund millage rate of 6.82 mills — down from the current 7.12 mills — while the fire service rate and debt service rate would each go down by 0.1 mill to 2.96 and 0.23 mills, respectively.
“To the naysayers that say this is all politics, well, no, because I did it a year ago,” Lee said. “We made a decision — my recommendation to the board and they adopted it — a year ago, to adopt a budget with a reduced millage rate and work towards that in anticipation of growth in the digest, based on the economic activity that we started to see the year prior.”
About two-thirds of Georgia’s growth is now happening in just six of the state’s 159 counties, said Matt Hauer, a demographer with the University of Georgia’s Carl Vinson Institute of Government.
Those include five metro Atlanta counties and Chatham County.
And half the state’s population growth is concentrated in just three Atlanta metro counties — Fulton, Gwinnett and Forsyth, Hauer found when he analyzed U.S. Census data.
Many other counties are adding more people, including Clarke County. Clarke is now one of the state’s fastest-growing counties, adding more than 1,100 people from 2015 to 2016, and could be close to 130,000 people four years from now, according to population projections of the Governor’s Office of Planning and Budget.
But Hauer was surprised to find nearly half of Georgia’s 159 counties were actually losing population in the first part of this decade. Between 2010 and 2013, 82 Georgia counties, many of them rural, lost population. More than two dozen of them saw negative growth of 10 percent or more. From 2000 to 2010, 30 counties lost population, most of them in southwest Georgia.
Georgia’s population of people 65 years and older will double over the next five decades, Hauer said. The number of people 18 to 64, the working years, will increase only 4 percent, however, he said.
White people make up the majority of the state’s population, but at the current rate of change, by around 2030 Georgia will be a “majority-minority” state where the number of people in minority racial groups is greater than the number of white people.
Mary Kate came in with her sister, Ashley, quite scared and shaky. Now, with lots of love and attention, she is a happy little girl looking for her forever home. She still needs plenty of work since she is shy with strangers. Mary Kate is quick to come around though and enjoys sitting in her handlers’ laps. We highly suggest she gets adopted with her sister, but she is young enough to adapt to a life with other dogs. She gets along well with dogs, cats, and children.
My name is Miley and I’m still quite young and lively. The dog catcher found me wondering around Darien in March 2016. I came to the shelter scared and lonely; I wasn’t too sure what to make of all these other barking dogs! But since the nice humans have taken care of me I’ve really come out of my shell. I guess I just needed someone to reassure me that everything is going to be okay. I get along very well with other dogs and I don’t mind cats all that much. If you want to find my my forever home, please contact the McIntosh County Animal Shelter at 912-437-4242.
I came to HART with my sister Ludiwici We did not have much attention before we came to the shelter. We are somewhat shy, but we are strong. I really need someone with experience in loving and training a dog like me. I need a strong pack leader to help me understand that Humans are my friend. I am very lovable and smart. The shelter staff tell me I will learn easily once I am able to trust.
When Schwerner, Goodman, and Chaney, a young black man, were coming back from a trip to Philadelphia, Mississippi, deputy sheriff Cecil Price, who was also a Klan member, pulled them over for speeding. He then held them in custody while other KKK members prepared for their murder. Eventually released, the three activists were later chased down in their car and cornered in a secluded spot in the woods where they were shot and then buried in graves that had been prepared in advance.
When news of their disappearance got out, the FBI converged on Mississippi to investigate. With the help of an informant, agents learned about the Klan’s involvement and found the bodies. Since Mississippi refused to prosecute the assailants in state court, the federal government charged 18 men with conspiracy to violate the civil rights of Schwerner, Goodman, and Chaney.
In a unanimous decision, the Georgia Supreme Court has reversed the Court of Appeals’ ruling.
“We agree that Officer Mason had no authority to effect a custodial arrest of (Zilke) outside the jurisdiction conferred by (the Georgia law cited by the trial court),” the opinion states, but Mason also lacked authority to do so under the law cited by the Court of Appeals.
“Indeed, the purpose of (that law) has never been to enlarge the territorial boundaries of the various law enforcement agencies in the state, but rather to give law enforcement officers the discretion to write a citation in lieu of making a custodial arrest for motor vehicle violations,” the opinion states.
Attorney David Willingham, who argued on behalf of Zilke in the Georgia Supreme Court, said the court’s decision means officers can no longer arrest people for traffic violations outside their jurisdictions.
“If a police officer is completely outside of his jurisdiction, he can’t write a citation or arrest somebody even if he witnesses something happen in his presence. He can still detain that person, and we never challenged the officer’s power to detain the person, but the whole point of the case is there is a specific statute that says campus police officers do not have any power to make an arrest unless they’re on campus or within 500 yards from campus or any property owned by the University or the Georgia Board of Regents. There’s a similar statute on the books for municipal police officers,” said Willingham, a former Cobb assistant district attorney.
Michael is a small dog with a LOT of love for people and dogs (he’s still trying to figure out what cats are all about). In public, Michael likes to think he’s the boss and tells the other dogs so. He loves to play, but if all his foster siblings are laying down, he’s happy to do that to. He is happy to be held and given any attention. Michael doesn’t care for the collar around his neck, and will need to walk with a harness.
Quantavious Lee Jackson, a young Brookhaven man with a crude dollar sign tattooed between his eyes, was found guilty of keeping two teen girls as prostitutes before their rescue in November 2014. After the verdicts, which a jury returned late Thursday, he faces life in prison during his sentencing hearing later this month.
“These convictions are the result of a tremendous effort put forth by multiple law enforcement agencies,” prosecutor Jennifer Hendee told the Daily Post on Friday afternoon. “We are very pleased with the jury’s verdict and we hope it sends the message that human trafficking will not be tolerated within Gwinnett County.”
The case had been one of many human-trafficking cases pending in the county since the General Assembly enacted Georgia’s law specifically addressing the crime in 2011, but it was the first to go to trial.
The DA’s office said Jackson, represented by Robert Booker, kept the girls, ages 15 and 16, for several days in various hotels in College Park, Buckhead and ultimately Gwinnett.
The Joint Music Economic Development Study Committee will examine ways to “measure, expand and promote” music and foster connections between recorded music and other arts, such as film, digital media and gaming.
The committee is charged with finding ways to support and promote music tourism, post-secondary education in music and new studio spaces for artists to record their work.
Incentives for small music studios and musicians could be part of a package for lawmakers to consider when they reconvene next year.
Advocates say tax credits for music recorded here, particularly for film, television and theater, could help the industry attract new artists, retain and nurture up-and-comers, and spur the development of new recording facilities and event spaces.
The Middle Georgia Regional Commission is set to meet and discuss a new T-SPLOST, but may not be able to get it on this year’s ballot, according to the Macon Telegraph.
It appears unlikely, however, that all the steps can be completed to get the referendum on the Nov. 8 ballot. That means that any public vote probably would be held sometime next year.
Designated elected officials from each of the 11 counties in the region are expected for a roundtable meeting soon.
The push for the referendum began in September after the Middle Georgia Regional Commission polled the 11 county commissions and a majority wanted to move forward with it. But Houston County, the second most populous in the region, opposed it, along with Putnam, Monroe and Twiggs counties.
Those in favor of a transportation sales tax referendum are Peach, Crawford, Macon-Bibb, Jones, Baldwin, Wilkinson and Pulaski counties.
On Thursday, the Glynn County Commission deferred its vote on an agreement with the city to allow Brunswick to have $15.99 million in projects included in the proposed Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax the governments are hoping to get on the November general election ballot.
The agreement is necessary for the city to get more than the 19.32 percent it is legally entitled to of the more than $71 million in taxes expected to be collected. That comes out to around $13.8 million.
As expected, Mayor Cornell Harvey was not happy about the sudden change and questioned how the city is supposed to trust the county when it appeared the county was set to move forward with the agreement.
“I’m sadly disappointed in them for not taking the vote,” Harvey said Friday. “This was something that we had already agreed to and had whittled our list down. They are right that they only have to give us 19.32 percent but we had gotten past all that. The county doesn’t like that we have the purchase of police vehicles on our list.”
County commission chairman Richard Strickland said the agreement may now in limbo.
When asked if he thought an agreement would ever be approved, Strickland said, “I can’t tell you that right now. There were a number of commissioners who had reservations that hadn’t changed. There was a (previous) compromise but the county commissioners had time to think about it and thought the county had given enough.”
Strickland went on to say that the city needs to come down on the amount of money they’re asking for.
“The (intergovernmental agreement) is only in effect because the city wants more money than they’re entitled to,” Strickland said. “Based on the city’s population they are entitled to 19.32 percent which comes out to $13.8 million.
“Ultimately, it is a special purpose tax countywide, and the only ones who can call for that are county commissioners. The cities do not have any say whatsoever in terms of calling for a ballot initiative regarding to a SPLOST. All we’re doing is working with the county to try to develop a very feasible project list as we go forward,” [said City Manager Jon Rorie].
If approved on the Nov. 8 ballot by Forsyth County voters, a 1-percent sales and use tax, called SPLOST, will be re-imposed from July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2022.
A SPLOST approved in 2007 will end on June 1, 2017, so this fifth SPLOST referendum would simply pick up where that one finished — approving the option on the ballot in November would not increases sales taxes more than they are now.
SPLOST V would be used to fund up to about $35 million in capital outlay projects and up to about $159 million for debt service retirements, said Rick Gunn, chief financial officer for Forsyth County Schools.
A maximum revenue of about $195 million could be collected from this SPOLST program, Gunn said.
Voters will have the choice to approve or deny this SPLOST continuation on their ballot when they vote for President and local elected offices in November.
The commission anticipates maintaining the millage rate for Chatham Area Transit at 1 mill, for the countywide general fund at 11.543 mills, and for the property tax paid by only unincorporated residents at 4.13 mills.
“The board of commissioners has stated its plan to keep the millage rates the same as they were last year,” Commission Chairman Al Scott said at an earlier hearing on the millage last week.
Although the county doesn’t intend to increase the property tax, the move by the commission to adopt a millage above next year’s rollback rate could result in an increase for some property owners’ annual tax bills. The county has reported that anticipated growth in property values could raise these payments on an average property by about $9.
That wait ends Tuesday when Solarize Savannah kicks off, with what’s shaping up as a 90-day period for interested property owners to sign up and have their rooftop evaluated for suitability.
Solarize is a national program supported by the U.S. Department of Energy that helps local governments promote solar energy to homeowners and business owners by streamlining the selection of an installer and buying in bulk to reduce cost. Begun in Portland, Ore., the program has been implemented in more than 200 communities around the nation. Solarize Tybee, which spread countywide, was the first Solarize project in Georgia. Solarize Athens and Solarize Decatur-Dekalb are currently underway.