Since she made that table, Valdosta actually lowered its millage to 7.916, which in the above example would mean $50.32 less per year, for an example of how little difference
these minor millage rollbacks or increases actually mean to taxpayers.
Valdosta Board of Education wants to increase its tax rate (but not its millage).
ESPLOST will win by 4 to 1.
Going not very far out on a limb, with only 3 of 9 precincts reporting,
79+ yes to 20% no at 8:30 PM,
I predict ESPLOST will win.
Oops, make that 7 of 9 precincts; changed while I was writing this.
Co-Chair Jerome Tucker emphasized that ESPLOST helping
public schools also helps economic development.
See below for who we now know are the
committee members for the Educational Special Local Option Sales Tax (ESPLOST).
It’s mysterious why that information wasn’t in
the PR before the meeting,
but now we know, since Gretchen went and took the videos
and collected the flyers you’ll find below.
Early voting already started that same day and continues through March 13th,
with the final Election Day 17 March 2015.
Lowndes/Valdosta Citizens for Excellence in Education
Education Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax
For Lowndes County Schools and Valdosta City Schools Continue reading →
A committee of unknown members is holding a kickoff meeting today
for the Educational Special Local Option Sales Tax.
Various local news media carry the announcement below,
but none of them seem to have the names of the committee members
beyond one co-chair.
I guess we’ll find out from the videos Gretchen is going there now to take.
Feb. 24: ESPLOST V Campaign. The ESPLOST joint committee will host a
campaign kickoff on Tuesday, Feb. 24, at 5 p.m., in the Valdosta
City Hall Annex Multi-Purpose Room. At the meeting, committee
members will share proposed projects for Lowndes County and Valdosta
City Schools with citizens. Early voting runs Feb. 23 through March
13. The final opportunity to vote will be on the official Election
Day, March 17. For more information, email Co-Chair John Eunice at
According to Terri Welden at the Lowndes County School Superintendent’s
office just now,
the Lowndes County Board of Education unanimously passed a resolution
against HB 170 last night.
It reads in part:
WHEREAS, this Board urges the members of the Georgia General Assembly
and our local delegation to strongly oppose any provision or measure to reduce
allocation of sales tax funding to local governments;
The Valdosta Board of Education unanimously passed a resolution against
HB 170 last night and forwarded it to the local legislative delegation
via email and on paper, according to Joy at the Valdosta School Superintendent’s
office just now.
HB170 has been introduced this legislative session. It proposes to
remove the local tax on fuel and replace it with a tax at the
distributor level which would be paid to the state. For Valdosta
City Schools this would mean a reduction in revenue of approximately
$1.8 million annually from ESPLOST. The total loss of revenue for
the city and county governments and the city and county school
districts would be approximately $12 million annually. If passed,
this bill would have a devastating effect on our community.
Yesterday a Georgia House subcommittee did exactly what Valdosta
urged it not to do about distributing HB 170 funds.
Given that LMIG mismatch between cities and counties
to replace the previous mismatch of forced double taxation
on cities and counties, is the legislature trying to cause
dissension between counties and their cities, or is it just that inept?
We know Valdosta’s position.
What will the Lowndes County Commission do?
How long will the Lowndes County government and ACCG wait to act,
while the Georgia legislature moves on
its stealth transportation
tax hike for Atlanta that would defund local school boards and city
and county governments?
A House subcommittee has made some changes to the bill,
but it would still force local governments to raise taxes,
and it adds an unrelated repeal of an electric vehicle tax credit
to its boondoggle for trucking companies and Atlanta.
Do we want our local public schools to be defunded like
wildlife programs were through the state’s wildlife license plate revenue
If not, now’s the time to lobby against HB 170, before
the full House Transportation Committee meets Thursday.
Yet there’s still nothing about HB 170
on the county’s agenda for this evening’s voting Regular Session.
Local schools would lose
$4 million annually
and local governments overall
$12 million annually,
HB 170 would
“re-allocate local sales tax funding from local governments to the state of
Georgia”, resolved Valdosta’s Mayor and Council last Thursday.
Plus HB 170 would effectively authorize
“double taxation of municipal residents”,
because both Lowndes County and Valdosta would have to raise property taxes,
which would result in Valdosta’s citizens being taxed more twice (by
both the county and the city).
For how serious Valdosta considers this threat to its ability to provide services
to local citizens, witness how fast this resolution got passed
(within weeks after HB 170 was introduced into the legislature)
compared to how long it took for Valdosta to pass
a resolution against the Sabal Trail pipeline
(about eighteen months).
The U.S. and China made a historic deal on climate change this week.
Here’s the good (it’s real, it’s huge, and it’s positive economically
for both countries), the bad (nuclear is first on the list of those “clean energy” sources), and the ugly.
Also this week China made a second huge natural gas deal with Russia:
what does that mean to the current U.S. push for LNG exports,
including the proposed Sabal Trail pipeline gouge through Georgia?
President Barack Obama and Chinese President Xi Jinping announced on
Wednesday commitments to reduce both countries’ greenhouse gas
emissions. The surprise announcement, which came while Obama visits
Beijing this week, is the clearest sign yet the two countries are
serious on climate change.