Your morning jolt: Hall County commission chairman proposes a tax increase

When you’re home to a governor and a lieutenant governor, something like this becomes a little more important. From the Gainesville Times:

Facing an $11.5 million gap in next year’s budget, Hall County Board of Commissioners Chairman Tom Oliver recommended a tax increase Thursday night.

County residents must choose between that or a “massive reduction in services,” he said, making his announcement before adjourning the meeting.

“Of my seven years on the commission, our next meeting will be one of the toughest decisions I’ll ever make as a chairman,” he said.
Oliver proposed a 1.41 mill increase in total, with a 0.6 mill roll up to account for the loss in property values and an additional 0.81 mill increase. The current millage rate is 7.77 mill…..

“I have a $180,000 house, and this increase would cost me 28 cents a day or $101.50,” he said. “Let me tell you what the other side is if we don’t participate: shutting down parks, libraries, two ambulances and taking away retirement and paid holidays for the employees in Hall County who protect us.”

***
The three appellate judges who will hear arguments between the government and 26 states over the constitutionality of President Barack Obama’s health care law have been named. From the Associated Press:

[They] range from a veteran judge with a solid conservative record to a jurist known for her ability to pick apart lawyers to an ex-federal prosecutor who fought organized crime.

Chief Judge Joel Dubina and Circuit Judges Frank Hull and Stanley Marcus were selected this week to serve on the three-judge 11th Circuit Court of Appeals panel that will review what’s considered the strongest challenge so far to the federal health care overhaul.

The latter two are Bill Clinton appointees. Dubina was appointed to the bench by George H.W. Bush:

His line of questioning will also come under scrutiny because of his daughter’s outspoken opposition to the health care overhaul. U.S. Rep. Martha Dubina Roby, a Montgomery, Ala., Republican elected in November, voted to repeal the health care ban because she said it was “less about providing health care for all citizens, and more about expanding federal government.”

ScreenShot048

***
Last night, a Republican friend was watching an ABC News report on revived talk of a Sarah Palin presidential run. File footage was used to explain the dues the former Alaskan governor has paid in contested areas. But the example used, an endorsement of Karen Handel in last year’s GOP race for governor here in Georgia, may have been the wrong choice.

***
On Wednesday, the Georgia Democratic party targeted U.S. Rep. Rob Woodall, R-Lawrenceville, with a video clip of his town hall exchange with a Democrat – who demanded to know why he accepted federally funded health care coverage. “Because it’s free,” he said.

Late yesterday, Woodall posted his own video explanation of his support for the House Republican plan to revamp Medicare:

***
Saxby Chambliss, ranking member of the Senate Intelligence Committee, on Thursday gave his blessing to an unusual extension of FBI Director Robert Mueller’s term by two years. From Politico:

President Barack Obama had requested the extension. FBI directors are typically limited to a 10-year term. Mueller assumed his post the week before Sept. 11, 2001 and his current term is set to expire Sept. 3.

Democrats Patrick Leahy of Vermont and Dianne Feinstein of California and Republicans Chuck Grassley and Saxby Chambliss announced they would meet Obama’s request with a one-time extension, citing “extraordinary times” and Mueller’s record of service.

***
Those tornadoes may have stirred up Alabama more than we thought. From the Tuscaloosa, Ala., News:

State Rep. Daniel Boman, who represents part of Tuscaloosa County, switched to the Democratic party [Thursday].

Boman, a 36-year-old lawyer from Sulligent, said Wednesday’s vote on a bill to change the state’s tenure and fair dismissal laws for educators convinced him he was in the wrong party….

Boman’s switch changes the dynamics of the Tuscaloosa County legislative delegation. The delegation, previously 4-3 Republican, now becomes 4-3 Democrat.

The switch reduces the number of elected Republicans in the House from 66 to 65 and increases the number of Democrats from 39 to 40.

***
The AJC’s Politifact Georgia today takes up U.S. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor’s claim that the U.S. is the Saudi Arabia of coal.

- By Jim Galloway, Political Insider

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33 comments Add your comment

the original and still the best John Galt

May 27th, 2011
9:24 am

Politicians always play the same old tune when asking for permission to extort more money from the taxpayers. “We’ll have to lay off firefighters and policemen, close the library, shut down the parks…” Seems like they could come up with a new line or two.

Douglas

May 27th, 2011
9:47 am

I wonder if Woodall has the ‘nads to stand up for what he SAYS he belives. Nope, didn’t think so. Hypocritical little snot.

How does changing Medicare have anything to to with you slopping at the public trough, Congressman? Are you signed up on the federal pension plan, too? I don’t argue with y’all getting paid, but the bennies should stop – every little thing, including YOUR “free” health care, costs US. Remember where the money comes from, you blathering toady, and man up.

Or has your man-card been revoked?

Douglas

May 27th, 2011
9:55 am

BTW, the sound on your clip was terrible, Woody. Get a lavalier mike next time. You can just charge it off to the U.S.Taxpayer like you do everything else (allegedly).

Douglas

May 27th, 2011
9:58 am

“You are posting comments too quickly,” says the website. “Slow down.”

Sorry if I’m thinking too fast for you, Dunwoody Journal Constitution. I’ll try to slow it down to a pace with which you are comfortable.

Will Jones - Atlanta Jeffersonian Exegesis

May 27th, 2011
9:58 am

Operating leverage, computerization, and good management should marginally continue to reduce government’s per capita cost to the citizenry. When the opposite happens, as in Hall County, it’s a sign of caesarism: a parasite feeding on its host sustaining a buffer caste of sinecures and “palace guards.”

Speaking of which…

The crimes and treasons against us have a champion in FBI Director Mueller, conveniently placed in office just before Bush’s and Cheney’s 9/11 treason. The lead prosecutor in the Federal government’s case against Italy’s largest bank, BNL, for loaning money to Saddam Hussein. After a federal judge with integrity, knowing the false case Mueller was making refused to hear it, he sent a Buckhead yuppie to prison, and an early death, leaving legally unscathed David Rockefeller and Henry Kissinger, who were on the BNL board of directors which oversaw the loan.

Mueller knows which side the “butter’s” on his traitor’s “bread.” Is he, too, Opus Dei? Knights of Malta? Is he better than the homosexual transvestite J.Edgar Hoover’s turning a blind eye to the Roman Catholic CIA’s assassination of John Kennedy, led by Richard Nixon and George H.W. Bush?

Rob Woodall’s soft hands tell it all: he is a smarmy fraud without character. Phony, fake man, he thinks his healthcare is “free?” Who does he think pays for it other than America’s taxpayers? With only their diversity to speak well of the Democrats, they are little better as fellow-travelers’ permitting 9/11-committing Bush and Cheney to continue to breath our air.

Truth and Justice is of G-d, and America must be G-d’s Promised Land. Any who disagree are of Satan, not G-d.

double

May 27th, 2011
10:03 am

Yeah we want less government,but not layoff anyone,or cut any services.No tax increases period.

deegee

May 27th, 2011
10:08 am

It was painful watching that clip. Where do those whackjobs go to learn the hand gestures?

deegee

May 27th, 2011
10:23 am

Hall County was one of the first to declare war on eeeeleeeeguls. As Hall County goes so goes the rest of Georgia. If you think that immigrants don’t contribute to the economy, think again.

Last Man Standing

May 27th, 2011
10:46 am

If my county is faced with the same situation as Hall County, I would say, “Cut services and lay off peeple if that is what it takes. Not a dime more in taxes.”

This is a situation that counties and municipalities will all be forced to deal with at some point. These government entities should act as we as individuals must act. If you can’r afford it, you must do without it.

John K

May 27th, 2011
10:52 am

Maybe Hall County should cut taxes on the rich? That’ll work. LOL

As for Woodall, what a slimy guy. He never answered the main question; why is ok for him to accept “free” socialized healthcare and get “free” medications he doesn’t need?

deegee

May 27th, 2011
10:54 am

That’s good, LMS. Tell someone that is paying their taxes that they will have to wait 30 minutes for an ambulance. It’s not that they aren’t paying for the service, it’s just that they aren’t paying enough.

Last Man Standing

May 27th, 2011
10:58 am

deegee:

“If you think that immigrants don’t contribute to the economy, think again.”

I’m curious as to how you see a relationship between illegal immigrants and the financial woes of Hall County?

Last Man Standing

May 27th, 2011
11:03 am

deegee:

Sorry, we don’t have that problem. The ambulance service to this county is provided by a “for profit” company. It is contracted at very minimal cost to the county. Their response time is excellent and their crews very well trained and capable. Unlike Grady, they are not used as taxicabs.

You Can Tell By The Smell

May 27th, 2011
11:19 am

Guess the Hall County Commission Chairmn doesn’t plan on seeking re-election. As for Cong. Woodall almost all politicians in both parties are slimy characters. You were expecting maybe one of the twelve Apostles? The voters who vote to put these scoundrels in office also must share the blame for electing these scumbags. If you contunie to elect greedy pigs don’t be surprised if they shove their noses in the trough. Time to put independents with a little integrity on the ballot by petition!

DannyX

May 27th, 2011
11:25 am

“Sorry, we don’t have that problem.”

Your county, like all others outside the metro-Atlanta area has no problem stuffing yourselves with metro Atlanta tax dollars. How about you give up your welfare entitlement and fund your own services?

Btw, how’s the hangover LMS?

double

May 27th, 2011
11:36 am

hall county need not blame illegals.afraid it begins at top not bottom.no more taxes…

Lum

May 27th, 2011
11:38 am

Why does government feel that “it” is shouldn’t have to get along with less money when the rest of us do? The recession has hit a lot of us hard, but the politicians seem to believe that we have limitless buckets of money. It’s amazing, it really is.

Last Man Standing

May 27th, 2011
11:45 am

DannyX:

O’m not a drinking man, DannyX, how about you?

Looking at my property tax bill, I’m hard pressed to see where we’re “stuufing” ourselves on Metro Atlanta monies.

Last Man Standing

May 27th, 2011
11:47 am

I’m (This keyboard can’t spell this morning!)

Last Man Standing

May 27th, 2011
11:48 am

double:

I’m amazed! I have to agree with you!

DannyX

May 27th, 2011
11:55 am

“Looking at my property tax bill, I’m hard pressed to see where we’re “stuufing” ourselves on Metro Atlanta monies.”

So that is a no, your county is not going to give up its subsidies? You think your road money is generated by the gas tax your small county takes in? Think your schools are funded only through property tax?

35% of metro Atlanta tax dollars go to the entitlement loving small counties.

“Keep yur guvmint hands off my Atlanta muney”

Reality is Fun

May 27th, 2011
11:58 am

Maybe if Chairman Oliver would cut his personal slush fund out of the budget, taxes wouldn’t need to be raised and services would not need to be cut. The citizens of Hall County are not as stupid as you think, Mr. Chairman!

findog

May 27th, 2011
12:09 pm

LMS, 10:46
Hall County has cut a lot in the last three years including:
Monthly furlough days
Changed the employee defined pension to a 401a that they now do not fund
Reduction in staff numbers
Deferring infrastructure maintenance

Thing is some older sub divisions have more than 25% foreclosure
People walking away from underwater mortgages thereby driving down the property values
Honest property values in their tax digest driving down revenue
Job losses reducing sales tax revenue

Then add three idiot tea party elected officials who wasted hundreds of thousands of dollars on legal fees and personnel changes and the only solution is to drastically cut services or raise taxes. Hall County is not some fat and sassy Gwinnett or Fulton; we have always been lean…

yuzeyurbrane

May 27th, 2011
12:10 pm

Woodall is smart enough to know he is lieing. The biggest lie is that his proposal would not effect those 55 and older. He doesn’t mention a very tiny line in the legislation that caps all entitlement spending if the deficit exceeds a certain % of GDP. Clever. The biggest entitlement programs are Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. A cap means a reduction. And not only would it impact Medicare but Social Security as well and IT WOULD NOT EXEMPT THOSE 55 AND OLDER FROM CUTS. On top of this, Woodall and his buds don’t even want to wait to enact this through the normal legislative process. Instead, is it 1 of their demands in exchange for raising the debt limit before we start defaulting on TBonds on Aug. 2. Blackmail is not the normal legislative process. And Woodall is right on board.

I could go on far beyond what anyone wants to read as to the other lies. For example, what he and Ryan have proposed is not just like the health insurance he receives as a member of Congress or even the exchange program that is part of the Healthcare Reform Act. It is a voucher pure and simple for an amount which the Budget Office estimates would leave most Seniors paying a majority of their health insurance premiums out of their own pockets. . . if they can find an insurer that will insure them. Medicare has been here almost 50 yrs. and therefore at least some of you may recall that the norm, under the private insurance plans that existed prior to that, was that they simply would not insure Seniors because it was not profitable for them. Seniors do get sick more often and it probably is not profitable for private insurance companies to offer any sort of quality insurance to them. Could this be the main reason Medicare is not profitable now? Does that make us a society want to throw grandma under the bus? The fact is Seniors are healthier both physically and fiscally because of Medicare (there are plenty of studies showing this) and live their final years with more dignity because of it. It is a good program for Seniors, their children, their grandchildren, Congressman Woodall’s Dad, and even for Congressman Woodall. I don’t live in his District but I certainly don’t hesitate to urge the 20% of his constituents who are Seniors to lead the charge to retire him at the earliest opportunity. Cuts should be made but not on the backs of the elderly and poor. Sacrifice should be shared (that means the wealthy). I am a Senior and I suppport this message.

findog

May 27th, 2011
12:18 pm

LMS 10:58 I believe you were posting here when this was the topic:
Tom Hensley, president of poultry company Fieldale Farms Corp. that has locations in North Georgia, told the Senate Special Committee on Immigration and Georgia’s Economy that 287(g) already had a detrimental effect on the poultry industry in Hall County that would only be worsened by statewide legislation.
Hensley said despite using measures to ensure the company hired documented workers, the anti-immigrant climate in the state has driven the Latino workers he depended on away from his business.
“We were 67 percent Hispanic in 2004. Our turnover was 25 percent. Our workers (compensation) cost was $50,000 a month. Our health care cost for the whole year was $8 million. It was about that time that the federal, state and local governments let it be known that these folks are not welcome,” Hensley said.
“Fast forward to 2010, we’re about 33 percent Hispanic now. Our turnover is 75 percent. Workers comp costs are $150,000 a month. Our health care last year was $20 million. Those are staggering numbers, but that’s the economic reality.
“We need comprehensive immigration reform in this country. It has to be a federal program, not the state … you can’t have 50 different laws in 50 different states. I implore you, don’t pass any more laws.”

findog

May 27th, 2011
12:27 pm

LMS, sorry it was td and not you jousting last February

phil c

May 27th, 2011
12:32 pm

DWH (driving while hispanic) will become the new DWB.

Last Man Standing

May 27th, 2011
1:29 pm

findog:

No probelm re quote.

We are not dramatically different from Hall County, except that the Board of Assessors refuses to lower property values. No amount of argument will sway them. I appealed year before last, and even informed them that I would sell my home and land for the appraised value to any one of them. No takers. The only avenue left to me was Superior Court, and that wasn’t an attractive option. The county here has made up the loss of education dollars by increasing the county tax. There is no age cut-off on paying school taxes here whereas many counties do eleiminate the school tax after a taxpayer reaches a certain age. On a fixed income, the increase in taxes means that I have to cut my personal expenses. I certainly am not the ony person facing this situation, but it doesn’t make it any easier for me.

DannyX:

If I could accurately figure out what portion of YOUR taxes BENEFITED me, I’d gladly send you a check – if you promised not to use that subject again! I had/have no control over what the state does. In fact, I have very little control of anything! My small dog just allows me to live here with her!

deegee

May 27th, 2011
1:46 pm

LMS, Hall County collects sales tax revenue to pay some of their bills. When illegal immigrants leave Hall County they aren’t shopping in the WalMart or eating at the Chinese Buffet or renting apartments. Hall County’s ethnic cleansing was supposed to save the county millions of dollars. Who miscalculated?

Michael

May 27th, 2011
6:49 pm

So Rob Woodall is just another welfare fed, socialist receiving free medical care from a government that uses its enforcement powers to take from its citizens to provide benefits to others.

Last Man Standing

May 27th, 2011
6:58 pm

deegee:

“Hall County’s ethnic cleansing was supposed to save the county millions of dollars. Who miscalculated?”

Are you saying that all the illegal immigrants have departed Hall County? Who is doing all the work that they did?

Another poster (from Hall County) stated that foreclosures were plentiful and decreasing property values are a fact. Do you suppose that just might have something to do with the tax revenues? What Hall County is experiencing is also true of most of the counties in the state. It has a name: they call it recession.

Tired of BS

May 30th, 2011
10:26 pm

Has this same Democrat asked John Lewis or Hank Johnson why they accepts free medical care from the government? Stupid question really on the part of the partisan only interested in their 5 seconds of fame.