Power Breakfast: DeKalb raises property taxes, Atlanta schools, boomers, Toyo Tire, Waffle House, debt talks

DeKalb is raising property taxes 26 percent as part of its 2011 budget, AJC writer April Hunt reports.

Tuesday’s 4-3 county commission vote means a 4.35 millage increase for the 2011 budget — and also money into savings to help the county improve its credit rating, Hunt writes. The move will generate about $50 million more in revenue, $5 million of it into reserves.

The tax hike adds $93 a year to the tax bill on the average home, which dropped in value since last year, Hunt reports.

But tax bills increase far more where home values have remained the same, with a $420 increase, for instance, on a home that remained at $300,000, Hunt writes.

Even commission supporters of the tax hike criticized the management of Chief Executive Burrell Ellis, who proposed the tax hike in May saying that falling housing prices would create a $37 million shortfall in the $529 million budget, Hunt writes.

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10 comments Add your comment


July 13th, 2011
7:28 am

CEO Ellis and his lieutenants jrader and kgannon have no idea how to run the county without simply raising taxes. That is their standard answer each year to everything. None of them care about growing Dekalb businesses and certainly have no interest in Dekalb’s working class. There are plenty of ways to balance the budget just as I have to do mine without raising taxes.


July 13th, 2011
7:30 am

It is people like CEO Ellis, jrader and kgannon that force those of us who love Dekalb as well as the Democrat Party to move elsewhere as well as having to vote Republican. They are doing their best to destroy Dekalb County as well as the few Democrats still left in the State.

fairness for all

July 13th, 2011
7:37 am

the answer is not to raise taxes on the property owners to the point they can’t afford their taxes.
the size and scope of county agencies and departments must evaluated and downsized appropriately. duplicate agencies must be consolidated and then downsized in order to provide the taxpayers with the best services for their dollars. Counties such as dekalb that simply look to tax their way through all of this budget crisis will wind up losing residents and forcing people into bankruptcies rather than eliminating county government waste and excess.


July 13th, 2011
7:59 am

Mr. Ellis you got your vote on my pay check and property tax this time when family is having just as hard times as the county in paying our bills i can not go to my job and tell them to raise my pay check to simply pay my bills, when it come time to run for office you know you want be getting back in as CEO and your Lieutenants and let’s not for get those that hold board member seat too, and those on our Dekalb co school borad too members seats too. will be out of a job and I am not going to move from Dekalb. just make sure you will not be getting my vote and many other residents of Dekalb co. who is having hard times making end come together and not meet, what wrong with you that in office, there are so many people that owes the county money let’s try to work with them and get some of that to cut the of the buget, even if they could only pay off half of they owe, and give the rest, cut your pay checks down, and why do you need more police cars i would just like to pay off my old car that you keep charging me too much taxes on it, kids are not better off in schools now days so why keep paying out money to improve building to look good when the kids can not read, and pass the test they are giving in schools, you want to cut the number of days trash is been pick up that cool to, what are you going to do with those people when they no longer have a job to pick trash, pay overtime to deal with what amount of trash you pick up on one day, think about it, get real too many of you are over paid yourself.and yes i am mad as H__ _ _ _ with the way you keep doing us.where were the fight to help save the home when people were losing them. oh!!! do not the banks that now own the home have to pay property on the home that they now own? or do you let them off the hook. and if so i want my money back for the same reason,


July 13th, 2011
9:07 am

So, let me get this straight. My home is worth roughly $20,000 less than what I owe on the mortgage. The county asesses my home and cuts the taxes because of the loss of value. Now the county wants to turn around and raise my taxes 26% to charge me basically what my mortgage is worth, not what my property is worth. What a shell game!

Wish I could trade my house in (like a car), buy one of those foreclosures out there, and add the negative equity to my new loan. It’d be cheaper than remaining status quo.

Mo Money

July 13th, 2011
3:52 pm

more taxes, more fraud, more waste, more giveaways to connected friends for useless costs. welcome to loserville!!


July 13th, 2011
7:15 pm

When demand outstrips supply for a business, that business will sometimes raise the price of the product. This helps put supply and demand in equilibrium by effectively reducing the number of buyers of the product.

It sounds like Dekalb County believes it is at disequilibrium–there are simply too many homeowners.

By its actions, Dekalb County has chosen to reduce the number of Dekalb homeowners–and businesses and everything else.

Good luck with that.


July 13th, 2011
11:18 pm

The Dekalb county Ga county commissioners have voted to increase property taxes by and unprecedented 26 % on already economically embattled residents . This in spite of rising food, water , utility and healthcare costs . Despite the fact few if any DeKalb county residents have enjoyed any increase in their family operating budgets .More signifigantly Georgia retains not only one of the nations highest documented unempolyment rates , but also is in the top three states where residents are experiencing the highest rates of real estate default foreclosure . Add to this some of the highest annual vehicle registration rates in the nation ,and it becomes sickeningly apparent that the county govenment is concerned only wth resolving their budget shortfalls ,with as little resourceful stategy as possible . Burdening an already financially strapped tax payer represents the path of least resistance to them . Yet the same county commissioners are making NO personal sacrifices to assist in relieving the counties budget shortfalls . Stand up for the rights imbued you by our nations Bill of Rights . . . “No taxation , without representation”
Kindly sign online petition and pass it on .

Meanwhile economists predict with confidence that home values nationwide will plummet another 20% before the end of the fiscal year making a tax such as this m an even further threat to the security of Dekalb county home owners for who there is NO bailout . (story on YAHOO news)

Kindly sign the petition online (spyware/malware free !) and pass it on to as people as you can !


July 13th, 2011
11:23 pm

WE really didn’t need the fancy new V12 Dodge Charger pursuit cars at the taxpayers expense when we have such an extreme budget deficit ,the county residents have to be subjected to financial rape to pay for them .


July 13th, 2011
11:25 pm