County Commission Keeps Same Tax Rate Rather Than Going To Slightly Higher "Certified Tax Rate"

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

County Commission members on Wednesday morning balked at moving to a slightly higher "certified tax rate" and instead left the property tax rate at the same $2.7652 per $100 of assessed valuation.

The commissioners unanimously rejected a prepared resolution that would have upped the rate to $2.7721 per $100 of assessed valuation.

Finance Director Louis Wright said the move means about $235,000 less for county government and $235,000 less for the county schools than had been projected.

Commissioners Joe Graham and Tim Boyd berated the county administration for not following the usual process of having a "continuation budget" until the figures are all in. They said the administration should not have assumed that the commission would be moving to the certified figure.

 Commissioner Graham said the commissioners earlier had to vote without having the full budget documents.

Mr. Wright said the money to cover the $235,000 in budget items would be from the fund balance.

However, Commissioner Graham said there was another option - to cut some of the items that had already been approved.

County Mayor Jim Coppinger was absent. Mike Compton, chief of staff, said they would confer and have a later recommendation.

Commissioner Fred Skillern said he was not in favor of pulling any more money out of the fund balance (rainy day fund).

Assessor Bill Bennett said it was the first time in his long history with the county that overall property values were down slightly. He said usually in the past the commission had to lower the "certified tax rate" 40-50 cents in order not to get a windfall from the reappraisal.

Commissioner Skillern said there was still about $2.5 million in "growth money" for the county. He said by the commission's action, that was cut to about $2 million.

The city of Chattanooga did the same thing - keeping the same tax rate and foregoing the post-reappraisal higher recommended certified tax rate. 


20,676 Cast Ballots In First 4 Days Of Early Voting In Hamilton County

In the first four days of early voting in Hamilton County, 20,676 have already cast ballots. That includes 1,900 ballots received by mail. There were 5,157 who turned out at early voting sites on Wednesday and 5,083 on Thursday. The total on Friday was 5,011, and it was 3,818 on Saturday. Sites: Brainerd 1,084, 1080, 1,030, 816 Election Office 1,848, 1,731, ... (click for more)

Clarence Ross, Leshawn Witherow Shot On Walden Avenue Friday Afternoon

Chattanooga Police are investigating a shooting that happened early Friday afternoon at the 6300 block of Walden Avenue.  Clarence Ross, 41, And Leshawn Witherow, 40, suffered non-life threatening injuries.  Hamilton County EMS transported both victims to a local hospital for treatment.  There is no suspect information at this time.  Investigators with ... (click for more)

Please, No Short Term Vacation Rentals In My Neighborhood

Approval of the short term vacation rental item on the City Council agenda for Tuesday  will be the next step toward commercializing our residential properties and communities to benefit those more interested in making money than preserving an old, well-established, rich community of like-minded families.    Anything requiring a business license is ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Kelly Could Win It

I am neither a sleuth nor an odds maker but I’d say there is about a one-in-three chance that Interim Hamilton County Department of Education Superintendent Kirk Kelly could become the permanent superintendent of our public schools next Thursday. I am assured something squirrelly is happening on our newly-seated school board. It has been seven months since the last superintendent ... (click for more)

UTC Defeats VMI, 30-13; Mocs Seniors Gain 34th Career Win

UTC junior running back Richardre Bagley rushed for a career-high 189 yards and two touchdowns to lead the host Mocs to a 30-13 Southern Conference win against VMI at Finley Stadium before 10, 505 fans. "It's a huge confidence booster," Bagley said. "All credit goes to our great offensive line and receivers blocking down field. The coaches did a great job preparing us. Everyone ... (click for more)

Goetz Outlasts Huwe To Win Signal Mountain Pie Run

The annual Signal Mountain Pie Run is one of those races where you don’t have to be the first across the finish line to be the overall winner. It’s a prediction run, so the runner getting nearest his or her predicted time was honored with cash prizes. Gregg Sutton crossed the line next to the old Signal Mountain Junior High with a time of 46 minutes flat, which was exactly ... (click for more)