County to form committee to analyze City’s double taxation research findings

Published 9:21 pm Tuesday, September 23, 2014

The Decatur County Board of Commissioners voted Tuesday to form a committee to analyze the information City of Bainbridge attorney Buddy Welch presented to the City Council at the Aug. 5 meeting.

At that meeting, according to Welch’s findings, city property taxpayers are facing “double taxation” on the animal control, fire protection, code enforcement, land use and planning and zoning services.

This means that city residents who pay property taxes are paying county taxes for services they do not receive from Decatur County.

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Decatur County Chairman Frank Loeffler said he believed in this situation, he would like to appoint himself, vice-chairman Dennis Brinson and Decatur County Administrator Gary Breedlove to form the committee.

Commissioner Butch Mosely said he thought having residents of Bainbridge and Decatur County on the committee might also be wise.

“Do you think it would be feasible to add some citizen or some impartial citizen to the committee?” Moseley asked the board. “Their clock is already turning, but ours is not at this point. If there were some way we could reach an agreement that would prohibit us winding up in court. It’s already bad enough.”

The Board of commissioners agreed and a motion was passed to form a committee consisting of Loeffler, Brinson and Breedlove with an amendment that two residents, one from Decatur County and one from Bainbridge, be a part of the committee as well.

“So now we have been given this packet of 100 pages,” Decatur County Administrator Gary Breedlove said about the research findings Smith, Webb, Welch and White of McDonough, Georgia, delivered to Decatur County. “This committee that was identified this evening will begin to assess this information.”