Property owners urge the board not to raise taxes -, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Property owners urge the board not to raise taxes

By Wainwright Jeffers - bio | email

NEWTON, GA (WALB) – Angry Baker County property owners packed the Board of Education meeting Wednesday night to urge the board not to raise the millage rate.

They say they simply can't afford a tax increase, but board members say the tax hike was the only way to balance the school system's budget.

The board of education voted 3 to 2 to increase the millage rate by more than 15 percent to 14.889 mills.

They got an ear full from residents, but the superintendent says there was nothing else the school system could cut.

"What I'm saying is this board needs to appoint some competent people along with tax payers to investigate where they can make more cuts," said Carol Thompson, Baker County Resident.

"We have increase class size to a maximum of 33, cut teachers, teacher aids, everything we can think to cut," said Tommy Rogers, Baker County Schools Superintendent.

Rogers said he wants the district to remain viable and has offered up some of his personal money to help.

The retiring superintendent says he's also working for free until the board finds a replacement later this year.

No board members would talk to us on camera.

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