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Property Taxes to Increase in Georgia
Thursday, 18 June 2009
June 18-- Start saving pennies now, because property taxes for the entire state will increase on the 2009 tax bills. The Georgia legislature has recalled the Homestead Tax Relief Grant, which previously reduced the share of taxes paid by the homeowner with the state paying the difference. In these tough economic times, the state can no longer afford to pay the difference, so the burden will fall to the homeowner. Each homeowner can expect to see an increase of approximately $200, depending on the value of his or her property. According to House Bill 143, passed at this year's General Assembly, the Homestead Grant will only be made available in the future if state revenues grow at least 3% plus the rate of inflation. Senator Tommie Williams was available to discuss House Bill 143.

"House Bill 143 set parameters whereby if our revenues pick up, we will continue to give homeowners the tax relief great. Actually, the best way to do it is not to give it to the county, but to give each individual homeowner an additional homestead exemption. We tried to double the homestead exemption this year. We  passed it out of the Senate, and failed in the House because the Democrats decided not to vote for it. But what we did pass this session was a bill to allow the amount from going up on your assessment. So it gave some relief, but what we should have done years ago when the homeowners tax relief grant was implemented, was double the homestead exemption rather than giving the money to county and hoping they would pass that savings along to the citizens, which they did not do," says Senator Williams

In other news regarding property taxes, at Wednesday's night meeting of the Montgomery County Commissioners, a tax abatement was discussed for a possible incoming detention center funded by the company Municipal Corrections. Montgomery County currently houses their prisoners at the Irwin County Detention Center at a estimate of $300,000 per year, and Executive Director of the Montgomery County Development Authority, Mr. Joe Filippone, says the county can expect to not only save on the money Montgomery County currently pays to Irwin County, but also can see profits from other business developing in the area.
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