District 56 State Sen. John Albers, R-Roswell, said he will be bringing House Bill 171 to the Senate floor today for passage. HB 171 would add an extra county commissioner seat in north Fulton.
The bill would also change the makeup of the board of commissioners so six would be by district and one would be at large.
“The reason for that is to make sure we have more local representation in each area of the county,” Albers said.
Currently five commissioners are elected from each district and two are at large.
District 3 Fulton County Commissioner Liz Hausmann said HB 171 is one of the top bills impacting North Fulton residents. Another notable bill to watch is HB 541, she said.
“[Last week, the House of Representatives] passed House Bill 541, which increases the homestead exemption over a three-year period to be a $60,000 homestead exemption from the current $30,000,” Hausmann said.
“It would significantly reduce everyone’s tax liability. If you are a property owner, it would mean that the first $150,000 of value of that property would be exempt from taxation. Most of the homes in north Fulton I think probably would still owe property taxes, but if they were less than $150,000, then they would owe nothing.”
She added, “It would also mean an estimated $48 million in reduction of revenue to the county every year after it’s fully implemented. That would mean a significant change in the services that are delivered, should that be approved.”
Albers said it is his intent to bring the bill up for Senate vote after it goes through the process of being read and referred.
Hausmann said she likes the bill because it would require Fulton County citizens to vote on the exemption..
“So even if it goes through the legislature and the governor signs it, it still would go before the voters,” she said. “The citizens get to decide what kind of county services they want and how much they’re willing to pay for it.”
Hausmann said several services the county offers are not considered mandatory, such as library services, senior services, arts programs and health services.
The General Assembly convenes today for Day 35 of the 2013