Tax Protest Douglas Courthouse Dec 10th - 5pm
Posted in the Villa Rica Forum
#1 Dec 9, 2013
Douglas County Property Tax Protest
When: Dec. 10th - 5:30 PM
Where: Douglas County Courthouse – Hospital Drive
Why: To demonstrate against increased budget spending and higher property taxes
Bring a sign and express your opinion on the 23% tax increase (2013) and demand a cut in spending and lower taxes in 2014.
Citizens have identified over $10 million in budget items that can be removed, postponed or alternative funding should be used. Tell your commissioner to cut spending.
Public Hearing will follow 6pm
#2 Dec 9, 2013
What are the budget items?
#3 Dec 10, 2013
So 24 hours later and no additional information.
I guess the statement "Citizens have identified over $10 million in budget items that can be removed, postponed or alternative funding should be used." can be translated to say: A few people looked at the budget proposal and have found some items that they do not personally benefit from and do not want funded, others may disagree.
Our problem is that what is fluff to one taxpayer is essential to another. And somebody has to pay for it all.
Rather than just wishing for lower taxes and carrying protest signs, lets identify the items "citizens" want cut. Then we can decide if lower services (cut items) is what is desired, that way we can lower the taxes.
That would be more productive than standing around hoping that Channel 5 sends a camera crew at 5:30 tonite.
#4 Dec 11, 2013
You can contact the Douglas County TEA party for the information. The DC web site may also have the video of the meeting.
#5 Dec 11, 2013
The event was covered by All News 106.7 and FOX 5, Sentinel and The Neighbor Newspapers. We did hand a list over the the commissioner and we have emailed them and attended the town hall meeting and talked to them personally. Sorry you missed the meeting. The next meeting is Dec. 17 10am for the budget vote.
#6 Dec 11, 2013
So still no info on how to cut $10M.
I did look at the DC TEA Party website. Other than saying "minivan" not "Cadillac" budget, no specifics were mentioned.
BTW that meeting had nearly as many people wanting MORE tax money spent on a new animal shelter. So I guess as long as your ox is not gored then budget cuts are good - otherwise it is an essential item and it needs to be funded.
#7 Dec 11, 2013
Oh, the protest drew 15 to 30 people (based on the varying number that the Sentinel reported today).
Wow - people are really PO'd about taxes! That turnout is nearly 0.0002% of the population.
#8 Dec 11, 2013
All you have to do to overcome the tax increase is file and appeal to the tax amounts on property and fight it out with the equalization dept.
I did and won my appeals the last 3 years...
Got a 70% REDUCTION so far from the highs of 2007 BECAUSE home values and property values crashed due to foreclosures and repo's.
APPEAL folks, APPEAL. All you have to do is go to zillow.com and put in your address and look at the resales around you for each year.
My taxes are the lowest ever!
#9 Dec 12, 2013
70 attended the hearing. One of the largest attended hearing. The commissioners got the message."Well" obviously you are not interested in this. Go back to watching TV.
#10 Dec 13, 2013
I thought that the paper said that half of the people at the meeting stood up to show their support of spending tax money on an animal shelter?
I am interested in what the proposed cuts are as well - if you are involved with this proposal, be a "town crier" and announce what they are. If you don't, or won't, I guess you can go back to listening to talk radio.
#11 Dec 16, 2013
I am very interested - in what cuts are being asked for. You are right about this particular meeting - I could not care less about how 15/30/60 or 70 people think that their taxes are too high. Get a thousand that are united in cutting services, then you can say that there is the beginning of popular support that can lead to lower taxes.
You see, other than just running around and saying that taxes are too high, a solution requires actual cuts in the budget. Every cut is going to affect someone's pet project/interest; roads, public safety, parks, senior center, employee pay/benefits and yes, even animal control.
While everyone would agree that they would like to pay less in taxes, everyone will disagree on what services need to be cut to allow for lower taxes.
So Crier, I ask again since you seem to be involved with the $10M cut people - what are the proposed cuts in the budget?
#12 Dec 16, 2013
Notice how the DC Sentinel has become a newsletter for the tea party? 20 people on the courthouse steps, each with a piece of cardboard that one person spent an hour making, does not equal "The wishes of the people". The great thing about our government is that 20 people can't hijack it and get whatever special interest they have approved. And make no mistake, the tea party is a small "special interest" comprised of a few people who don't want to pay taxes. If 20 people showed up on the courthouse steps demanding that the county cut senior services I speculate that the county commissioners would probably say to themselves, "No, that is not in the best interest of the county". The Sentinel however is being run by someone who apparently wants this to look like a large movement, not only in "news" articles but also on their Facebook page.
We elect representatives to make the decisions they feel are best for the county, not to take an opinion poll for every issue. That is why we are a Republic! I hope that our commissioners are not short sighted enough to be bullied by some crackpots who bought some cardboard signs. The protesters no more know how to cut $10 million than they know how a republic functions.
#13 Dec 16, 2013
It's a good thing the tea party wasn't around when we built the interstate road system that has enabled our country to prosper.
#14 Dec 16, 2013
Prepare for the, "We just want to cut unnecessary spending" response. Aka: I don't want to pay taxes for anything I don't think is important.
#15 Dec 19, 2013
I agree Republic. I wish our Constitution did not allow free speech so those crackpots could not disobey their elected officials. I personally think they should have been arrested for speaking out about the 24% tax increase. There is plenty of room in that new $120M jail in Douglasville for all of them. Why don't these crackpots understand that government knows what is best for the people?? In addition one animal shelter is not enough for a county that size. I hope the elected officials realize that and raise taxes by another 24% next year so they can build 3 more shelters. I'm still mad about the original Boston Tea Party incident and I'm sure you are too. The colonists should have just paid the tax and shut up.
#16 Dec 19, 2013
SPEND - you miss the point: It is not that people should not speak out - they should. Bravo to all who came out to speak and be seen. The point is that if only a small minority of the people speak out, the representatives should take that into account.
Comparing taxation that was imposed by outsiders (the Tea Act), AKA taxation without representation, with a tax passed by locally elected officials is beyond hyperbolic. Our taxes will pay for things that we personally do not benefit from along with the things we do - that is how taxation works. Here is some hyperbole for you: If few dozen people came to a meeting and proposed that we close down all non-public safety spending and devote all that money to extending MARTA to Arbor Place Mall - would you want the Board of Commissioners to vote for that?
23% increase - more should have been done to reduce it and to explain why. There is no doubt about that.
I will again ask the question that keeps being ignored in this thread:
What are the proposed cuts that were mentioned in the OP?
Our biggest problem in this country is that for the most part, there are no large gatherings of citizens demanding a reduction in government services. There are gatherings of people demanding lower taxes and gatherings of people demanding more services - resulting in the deficits that our great grand children will be paying off.
Our second biggest problem is that the voters (or lack of voters) seem to not care; we have terrible voter turnout and seem to re-elect nearly everyone. If you were an elected official that was of the "spend spend spend" variety and were re-elected - what would you do to stay in office? Cut back or keep on going?
#17 Dec 20, 2013
Who cares what the specific cuts were? The bottom line is the leaders went on a $13M spending spree with the taxpayers money. Douglas doesn't have a revenue problem they have a spending problem. And I agree, kudos for the citizens that don't want their county to be the next Detroit. Just about all counties, cities and states in this country that believe in a liberal "over tax and over spend" spending policy are having financial problems. Here are some fun facts about Douglas County:
1) They spend 40% more on public safety than other similar sized counties in GA. That's $12M
2) The county employees only pay 20% of the total cost of their healthcare. Taxpayers cover 80%. This is unheard of in the private sector and costs the taxpayers $8M.
3) Their school system is broke but their BOE members are the 2nd highest paid in the state and in the top 1% nationally
4) They are still spending $20M/yr to pay off that $117M jail and the leaders just announced they have approved a $1.7M trail to be built in 2014 to connect 2 parks
5) The leaders just announced that they have so much extra money this year (of course they do.$13M more than LY)that they are spending $200k on Christmas bonuses for county employees
6) My favorite: They are spending $90k next year to plant flowers around the new $50k Sheriffs sign. So for $140k the taxpayers got a new sign and some flowers. The average 3 bedroom home in that county is $125k. Only a wasteful spending policy can justify spending that kind of money on a sign.
The reckless spending list in that county is endless and $10M in cuts can be found easily. Even by a crackpot
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