Grand jury speaks on property revaluations - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Grand jury speaks on property revaluations

December 19, 2007

Albany --  A Dougherty County grand jury recommends throwing out the recent property revaluations because they believe they weren't conducted according to state law and county specifications. Grand jurors also want voters to get the chance to decide on city/county consolidation.

Do Dougherty County voters want a consolidated Government? We may never know, since the Albany city commission and Dougherty County commission haven't passed along that option to voters. Grand Jury Secretary Sandra Webb said, "We're asking the city and the county to move forward in their process and let it go all the way through so that the citizens can then have a voice."

"The Grand Jury felt very strongly that the citizens of Dougherty County have the ability to make the decision as to whether they consolidate government or not, but to deny them the right to make the choice is wrong," said Huddy Hudgens.

Something else the Grand Jury thought was wrong? The way a recent property evaluation was conducted.  "Recommend that the revaluation be thrown out and the process started again," said Webb.

Foreman and property developer Huddy Hudgens says it's not fair that tax dollars paid for the revaluation, and taxpayers once again have to pay to fight it.  He said, "It has cost the taxpayers of Dougherty County a lot of money on the front side with the county spending some roughly $900,000 for the report, but now they have each individual citizen in the position of having to take their good money to prove that they are in fact, wrong in what the Tyler report presented."

The Grand Jury Presentments have no legal weight, but are just recommendations they hope will be carried out.

They also recommend the implementation of a school uniform dress code for all grades in Dougherty County schools.

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