To Hike or not to Hike

Taxes all around

I saw an article on AccessNorthGa concerning the Barrow County Chairman opposing a tax hike.  Unlike our Chair who endorsed a tax hike, it did get me to thinking about how our neighboring counties are doing with their budgets:

County

2010 Millage

Increase/ Decrease

Budget

Citizen Committee

Population

Gwinnett

12.780

Same

~$448m

Y

805,321

Barrow

10.338

Undecided

~$32.37m

Y

69,367

Jackson

~9.941

Same

~$62.19m

N

60,485

Banks

8.979

Same

~$11.7m

N

18,395

Habersham

8.91

Decrease

~$21.8m

N

43,041

White

9.19

Same

~$13m

N

27,144

Lumpkin

6.987

Increase

~$16m

N

29,966

Forsyth

6.907

Same

~$91.81m

N

175,511

Hall

7.76

Increase (Fire)

~$85.6m

N

179,684

Overall, it looks like most areas held the line on taxes.  Hall and Lumpkin went up, while Habersham appears to have gone down.  Some of the areas like Gwinnett and Forsyth have had millage rate hikes in the past couple of years, but not this year.

It was interesting to note the counties that mentioned a citizen’s committee for the budget.  I have seen committees used in the past to both deflect blame and as a tool for communication.  In the case of Barrow County, the citizen committee actually recommended a tax increase.

Call me a tea party junkie or just an armadillo hat wearer with my head in the sand; I cannot see how anyone can afford a tax increase.  Our board managed to hold off for this year, but if they do not curb spending, where will we be next year?

Hugh Hall County Akston

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