Property tax roll-back in Cordele - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Property tax roll-back in Cordele

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November 20, 2003

Cordele-- While most cash-trapped cities are raising taxes, one South Georgia town is rolling them. The Cordele City Commission unanimously decided to decrease the millage rate about two points--although they will still be collecting the same amount of tax revenue.

Harry Bradshaw has already heard about the millage rate rollback, "I think that we are taxed enough." This long-time Cordele homeowner is skeptical about the tax break, "The thing that I don't understand is they keep rolling back things but taxes keep going up they keep increasing and I don't know where that comes from."

Reassessments on the value of his home and everyone else's in Cordele came back last week. That means $300,000 extra tax revenue dollars for the City--and roughly a million dollars for the school system and county. But, city commissioners turned down there share.

City Commissioner Jimmy Black says, "But based on the fact we were not going to vote on a tax increase even though the city desperately needs the money to keep us going for infrastructure for the future." Cordele has had a lot of growth--thanks to I-75.

But there has not been a property tax increase in the city for more than a decade, "We have never raised property taxes in the city of Cordele for 13 years. And it looks really close like we will have to one day but as long as we can keep going we are gonna stay just like we are."

Staying like they are means working with what they have--for instance, the city has kept the same number of employees for 15 years. And this year's budget does not include any additional capital expenditures.

The Crisp County Commission also rolled back their millage rate. But the School System is taking their additional million dollars in property taxes--which equates to a nearly 18% tax hike. Of course, the school system is being impacted by hefty state cuts.

Posted at 5:40 p.m. by melissa.kill@walb.com