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75 percent of SPLOST proposal could go to transportation

LAWRENCEVILLE -- Just a year after a regional transportation tax failed at the polls, Gwinnett officials say they plan to devote three-quarters of a proposed county special purpose local option sales tax to that use.

Commission Chairwoman Charlotte Nash told city leaders Tuesday that the county intended to devote 70 to 75 percent of the proceeds from the proposed extension of the current 1 percent tax -- up for a vote later this year -- to transportation projects.

While officials still must decide on the length of the program and other issues before an official call for the November referendum, Nash said commissioners believe the money would best be devoted to a need that will not require much contribution from the county's strained operating budget.

The remaining 25 to 30 percent of the funding would be divided among public safety, recreation, senior services and library replacement projects, she said of the up to $498 million that could be collected under a three-year program or $889 million that could come in a five-year cycle.

"It takes a lot of funding to deal with the transportation needs of the county," Nash said.

Norcross Mayor Bucky Johnson applauded the county's allocation plans, saying that the failure of last year's Transportation Improvement Act proposal for a regional tax leaves governments with fewer resources, since state and federal budgets are tighter.

"I think the county is on a really good path to look at transportation," said Johnson, who led a regional roundtable that devised the Atlanta regional proposal. "You can really tell a difference in counties that invest in infrastructure and those that don't."

Many city leaders said their own project lists show a majority of the funds going toward transportation, talking about proposals that include sidewalks and multi-use paths that belong in the category alongside roads and bridges. They did point out that the county's list will not include transit -- a segment of the Atlanta plan that was unpopular in the suburbs.

Over the 28 years Gwinnett has participated in SPLOST programs, more than $2.5 billion has been collected, including more than $1.2 billion for transportation projects.

Nash pointed out that the county's first sales tax program raised funds for the Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center, where Tuesday's required meeting with municipal leaders took place.

Like the Atlanta regional proposal in 2012, Gwinnett also has a history of devoting all the sales tax proceeds to transportation. In 1995, local voters rejected an extension of the program devoted solely to transportation. The tax resumed after a successful 1996 vote, when quality of life projects such as parks, libraries, and police and fire stations were added to the proposal.

While government leaders are prohibited from using public resources to advocate for or against the sales tax proposal, many of the elected officials said they personally believe the passage is critical to the community.

With government trust at a low, though, Nash said the leaders have a responsibility to report to the public on how the tax dollars have been spent over the past three decades.

"I think that is the most compelling statement we can make," she said, describing the projects that tax proceeds have funded as things people "touch" every day. "We have kept faith with the public ... and we delivered good projects."

By the end of July, officials must reach an agreement on how the money will be divided over project categories and amongst Gwinnett and its 16 cities. The referendum is expected to be held in a special election Nov. 5.

Comments

R 1 year, 2 months ago

I guess its just TOO much to ask that the taxpayers get a little 12 month break before we get it renewed huh?

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CD 1 year, 2 months ago

"Bidness" been slow. Christmas around the corner. Need more gold chains and a new, leased 4x4.

HAW HAW HAW

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NorcrossDot 1 year, 2 months ago

My usual stance will be: Why should I vote to give more money to a group that has already proven they can't handle the money most of you have already given them? I will again vote against any and all Splost, taxes etc. If and when we ever have a responsible government at any level then I will re-consider. The only way we will ever have responsible people in office is to hold them to the highest standard of accountability. Until then you get what you vote for.

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JV 1 year, 2 months ago

"... up for a vote later this year." Did GDP mean to say 2014?

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jack 1 year, 2 months ago

One can assume those critical of the Fair Tax for being unduly burdensome on the poor will be turning out in droves to vote against any SPLOST.

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Oliver 1 year, 2 months ago

Over the 28 years Gwinnett has participated in SPLOST programs, more than $2.5 billion has been collected, including more than $1.2 billion for transportation projects

(that's only about 50% of SPLOST going to transportation projects)

In 1995, local voters rejected an extension of the program devoted solely to transportation. The tax resumed after a successful 1996 vote, when quality of life projects such as parks, libraries, and police and fire stations were added to the proposal.

The county commission would be wise to pay heed to history, The citizens of Gwinnett don't trust you and if you want more of our money, we want something more than asphalt.

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JohnGalt 1 year, 2 months ago

The regional transportation tax?

We voted it down because of the HOT lanes. We voted it down because funds were allocated for projects which had already been funded like widening GA Hwy 20 between Sugar Hill and the Chattahoochee River, thus freeing up that money to divert to whatever the whim du jour was. We voted it down because you wasted taxpayer money to beautify an exit ramp at Lawrenceville Suwanee Road and I85. We voted it down because you have a long demonstrated history of fiscal irresponsibility and a culture of corruption as Bannister slipped out the door in disgrace to avoid prosecution, Lassiter is now serving time on bribery charges, Kenerly is soon to be serving time on bribery charges, and Mikey was finally voted out of office. As for libraries and fire stations, do you really want to go down that path? How about an unnecessary library built at Hamilton Mill without any provision to staff it? How about the three fire stations that remained closed after being built for the same reason? How about all of the inflated prices paid to all your friends and relatives for property for parks that in some cases is barely useable if you can even call it "useable"? Everybody is really sick and tired of your crap and paying for it. No matter, I'm outta here in two months. I'm taking my two businesses and my tax dollars elsewhere because I am so fed up with being taxed to death and having so little to show for it. No garbage plan. No more School Board voting for more tax dollars to shore up their budgets (another boondoggle I could write a dissertation on). And no more of this inept corrupt local government intent on destroying our community and way of life. Twenty years from now, Gwinnett will become the new Dekalb County! Don't believe it? It's happening right under your collective noses!

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SurelyNot 1 year, 2 months ago

In 1985 we hired two people from a company in DeKalb. Every time something didn't go right, they would say "Gwinnett is going to become just like DeKalb." After a few months everybody wished they would go back to DeKalb...or anywhere but here in GC. GC is not DeKalb. GC manages resources and stretches them to the max. Transportation is no exception. And you have no evidence of that under your nose or anyone else's. You may not like change, but that is not always negative.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

True, Gwinnett hasn't turned down a single Federal matching grant that I can recall in 20+years.

Problem is - the Federal strings are starting to really chafe.

Change doesn't always mean problems as long as someone actually reads the fine print disclosures before they sign...

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hangdogs 1 year, 2 months ago

Well said Mr. Galt. I actually like Mike B. He seemed to be the only one to stand up to the rest of that group at the time. Also, he is the only rep I've ever had at the local, state or national level who would respond to my questions and concerns.

The one thing that has always burned my backside is the development of the old Kenerly castle property and how it was miraculously included in the Brookwood school district. When you look at that map, it is insulting to see what was done. When we had issues with the redistricting a few years ago, one of the board members told me they didn't get involved in school board issues. I showed them the map and asked if they would please not blatantly lie to me to my face.

It all makes me sick, and I agree with Coyote below...I'm not voting for any tax increase on myself.

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Why_not 1 year, 2 months ago

Those fire stations were unoccupied for only a very short time. They have been up and running and fully staffed for a long time now. Tell the entire story......

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

Which is SPLOSTS may bring pressure to the General budget after the fact ...

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Don_Coyote 1 year, 2 months ago

The promise of the various SPLOSTs from their inception was supposedly to alleviate property tax increases yet in the past 3 decades of continuously renewing them the property tax rates have still climbed higher. And on this same page I get to see advertising for a venue where some of those taxes were funneled with the ad for "Coolray Field". I will not vote to tax myself any further, period. I will not vote for any politicians who propose for me to tax myself further, period. I certainly will not vote for any politicians who vote directly to tax me further, period.

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kevin 1 year, 2 months ago

No more SPLOST. This is just us taxing ourselves over and over. Didn't this same BOC raise our property taxes already? wait till your bill is rec'd. That "other" 25% is the most troubling part. It will produce more "ongoing" expenses that we will have to pay for. Increasing infrastructure just increases overhead, payroll, and retirement benefits, which results in more property tax increases down the line. This BOC is not about "cutting" back or eliminating any waste, it is about "give me" more of you money for us to decide what to spend it on and get your vote back for it.

The 75% transportation part of this proposal is simple more of the same one that FAILED. Why vote for it again? We are doing just fine on major roads, Gwinnett should be taking the transportation money it is already getting and make better use of it, not ask us to "splurge" for another 5 years. Let the BOC figure another way to bury themselves come next election. Let them increase our taxes. at least they will have to answer for it at the polls. The politicians have fooled you all long enough. Make it stop.

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GwinnettResident2001 1 year, 2 months ago

Keep in mind that there are consequences to every decision. Voting down of SPLOST will be a very long term loss to the economic viability of the County. There aren't capital funds to do any improvements without SPLOST unless property taxes are raised. This includes resurfacing of roads, replacement of police, fire and EMS vehicles and other basic services that the County must provide.

You can find the County's 2013 budget here. You can find exactly what the 2009 SPLOST has funded here and go to pages 35-39. The County spent more $8MM on resurfacing alone and about $4MM on fire, EMS and police vehicle replacement - which will be needed each year. That's $12MM for just those basic services that has to come from somewhere. If you review the expenditures and you've got brilliant suggestions on where to come up with the reallocations that are legal, including requirements from federal, state and previously committed contractual obligations, I hope you speak up to the BOC.

Also, if you feel like the County is splurging on transportation, in the linked document, I'd encourage you to identify the "splurges" since each and every project and dollar are accounted for in that document. Making arguments with generalities is easy - "they spend too much" or "they splurge" or "they're not responsible" - well, find it in the transportation project list from SPLOST and make a compelling, factual, non-emotional based argument for your position.

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dman 1 year, 2 months ago

Good Post. Thanks. Folks, realize, that SPLOST is a Sales Tax on items purchased in Gwinnett County. You have been paying 6% for almost 20 years. You are used to it. If you don't want it to affect your budget, then buy your groceries and such in another county that may have a lower sales tax. Operations of the county are based off of Property Taxes. Capital and some re-vitalization projects are what SPLOST pays for. IF you want to go from $160 million in Capital projects to $2 million in Capital projects, then go ahead and vote it down. I don't want to here one gripe for any fellow taxpayers on "why isn't my road being fixed or why my local park didn't get redone with better equipment or why isn't my local bridge getting upgraded.?" You had a choice to continue it...just remember.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

Believe us we WILL remember…

By all means, let’s just keep raising taxes - just cause we are USED to it...
We are so “USE to it” in fact that a Ballpark was built for a PRIVATE corporation and it was started by raiding funds that were collected for general PUBLIC park use. Yeah have those funds been returned yet?

(BTW Full RETAIL price plus all the overtime the contractors could bill )

Supported by increases on car rental/motel/hotel transactions that raises revenue for the Gwinnett Conv Bureau or “Atlanta’s Playground.” But this same organization also drains General funds.

Sales taxes are paid by non residents…

So go to the store and count the car tags on a list (or cell phone ap) for yourself one side for GWINNETT one side for everybody else when YOU shop. No 100K+ consultant required.

First you’re paying the “fee” and if the average you come up with is about 85 percent Gwinnett vs. 15 percent OUTSIDE - just see how much of that expense is borne by US!!!

If you support sales taxes great – Just stop the “We are collecting and spending other peoples’ money” ruse, it’s unbecoming.

Yea a few radicals think a break is in order - it isn’t like you if vote NO now - that it will NEVER ever be brought up AGAIN or anything …

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kevin 1 year, 2 months ago

If roads would be built correctly, and also patched correctly, the county wouldn't need to be worried about fixing up all these roads over and over. I have one hole that was patched and it is worse now (4 months later) than with the hole. It isn't even level with the rest of the road so every time you go over it (and you have to) you hit a bump. Well done county! Wasted more of my tax money for nothing.

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Why_not 1 year, 2 months ago

With no SPLOST, you may have to get used to worse than that......

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

If roads were built correctly - they wouldn't have been found to suffer such wear and tear at the task of supporting sanitation truck traffic ...

Therefore, we would still have non government trash pick-up. (Smiles)

The logic just keeps coming back up like a Cool Ray staduim hot dog,one burp and you experience it all over again!.

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kevin 1 year, 2 months ago

If you like this tax, then ask the BOC to increase the regular sales tax. That way the BOC can take the responsibility and then we can be on the record as having sales taxes higher than other places. This way we don't "hide" our tax rate by doing it with a SPLOST tax that no one talks about. I'm tired of giving and giving. The county does collect property taxes for all these other things you talk about.

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dman 1 year, 2 months ago

They do...but my point again. It will be a 1000% deduction on those projects. We don't collect enough in property taxes to do everything that all want done, like "my road needs repair", etc.

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Why_not 1 year, 2 months ago

I agree with dman.....the required infrastructure in this county requires much more than the property tax base will provide. Unless of course we all agree to suck it up and let our roads fall apart and not sorry about other county services. I think this would please Kevin a great deal.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

Can't get EVERYTHING you want all at once?

Welcome to the REAL world of the working stiff!

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Why_not 1 year, 2 months ago

As a retired firefighter, I can attest to the benefit the SPLOST has brought to the county. We benefited not only from the construction of new fire stations but also the purchase of all the apparatus and vehicles used by the department. Considering that an average fire engine costs about $500,000 and an aerial apparatus is upwards of 1 million, as capital purchases they are acquired by the SPLOST. Also consider the fact that a typical fire engine will only last 8-10 years due to the high mileage and with 30 current fire stations, the burden of those purchases would need to come from property tax revenue without the SPLOST. The fact that a large amount of those sales taxes are generated by non-residents and apartment dwellers who do not directly pay property taxes, I feel that it is imperative that the SPLOST continues. It's easy to see that some who post here could care less if our infrastructure remains intact or if needed services are even provided at an adequate level. I for one, do not want critical services to suffer now or in the future.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

Well hate to break the BUBBLE here but its time.

If you pay rent - be it in a single family, duplex or Multifamily structures, you ARE paying the property tax each month…

Got it?

Owners of rental property prorate expenses by the square foot rented and apportion “common area” costs among ALL units. Some are slick enough that they prorate it variably, so any costs associated with vacant units are transferred to the occupied units basis. You may not agree with the tax RATE the properties work out or actually pay with the government entities involved, but that’s another matter all together.

As to supporting CRITICAL services like Fire Police EMS, yes we DON’T want those impacted. Because we KNOW there is only so much to go around and we NEED reserves in OUR pockets, not in a rainy day fund for Governments to leverage into NEW projects…

Just because we are Used to paying it ...

Some married our spouse till Death do us part, we didn't take that pledge with a SPLOST.

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kevin 1 year, 2 months ago

Just like the Federal government, this BOC is trying to be all things to all people instead of first just providing for our safety and welfare. We need to stop all the other "government do this for me" spending and concentrate on what the county was supposed to be doing all along. Why wouldn't any government promote a tax that the folks vote against themselves? It save their behinds.

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Why_not 1 year, 2 months ago

Please provide examples of what you mean by "all things to all people." Then tell us what services you would cut if you had the opportunity.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

Trash

Outsourcing park system - hey its worth a look

Sell Cool-ray before the refurbishment expense comes due - which will be LONG before the end of current bonds or even the Braves lease expiration.

Cut consultant and outsourced legal expenses by 20 percent first year.

Place hold on all fact finding missions for 4 years, then reevaluate.

Stop Chamber funding from any government or quasi government county entity that derives its funding from taxation.

The Chamber is a private organization - we have cut funding to nonprofits elsewhere and the chamber has membership paying dues for its funding source.

So hows that for starters?

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JV 1 year, 2 months ago

Anyone remember E-SPLOST? Even though it passed, the school board is going to increase our property taxes anyway. So, the argument that without a SPLOST here there and everywhere will lead to higher property taxes is moot. Property taxes are going to go with SPLOST or without it.

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JohnGalt 1 year, 2 months ago

I'm not going to waste my time arguing with you people. However I will make one comment regarding the SPLOST argument. SPLOST stands for Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax. With the emphasis on "special", just how long and how special are the continuous perpetual projects you hold so near and dear to your heart? I also find it ironic that most every person that comments in here that supports this foolishness are either current or retired government employees. Enough said!

Like I said, I'm done and I'm out of here next month. Will the last "producer" in the county please turn the lights out when you leave. Don't bother locking the door...locks won't matter by then anyway!

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Why_not 1 year, 2 months ago

Well John Galt....don't let the door hit you in the a__ on the way out. Ten hours ago you we outta here in 2 months....2 hours ago you were outta here next month. Keep posting and maybe you will be gone tomorrow.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

An example of math use that clearly shows how we got behind the 8 ball...

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GwinnettResident2001 1 year, 2 months ago

Where's Utopia, John? Because Gwinnett is one of the FEW counties in Georgia with a 2% sales tax (in addition to the state's 4% sales tax). Nearly every other county in Georgia is 3%. Nobody is lower than 2%, so we're already the lowest in the State of Georgia.

https://etax.dor.ga.gov/salestax/salestaxrates/LGS_2011_Jul_Rate_Chart.pdf

But I suppose platitudes and ad hominems are all you've got when facts aren't on your side. You like to make accusations (I'm not a current or former government employee) and Gwinnett has one of the lowest unemployment rates in the state (24 of 159 counties - still a lot of "producers" here).

So, if you've got the answer and since you're out of here soon anyway, why don't you share with us morons what muncipality we should model ourselves after. Think of it as a parting gift to us know-nothings. Tell us where Utopia exists that we might emulate and some day reach the promised land.

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SurelyNot 1 year, 2 months ago

Yes. Go find a better place, JohnGalt. We are ready for you to do so. Be sure to let us know how it is in about a year. As for us who choose to live in GC, we need to support whatever will alleviate the traffic issues we have. SPLOST is the least painful way to do so and the greatest benefit is that those from N Ga spending money at the Mall of Ga helps us pay for the improvements. Not only those people, but those who come to the Arena, Cool Ray, etc. As for any special purpose option tax, I don't think any of you have missed a penny here and there. Quit complaining. Our way of life is not free. We have outstanding services here: fire protection, police protection, schools, shopping, churches, social services, the arts. God has blessed us beyond measure.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

Try this yourself just to verify your assumptions; you might be very surprised about those plate percentages over weekly, monthly and business quarterly time periods.

Chamber and Simon Properties brochures are neat stuff but follow the advice of Warren Buffett on this one.

Sales taxes are paid by non residents…

So go to the store and count the car tags on a list for yourself one side for GWINNETT, one side for everybody else when YOU shop.

First you’re paying the “fee” and if the average you come up with is about 85 percent Gwinnett vs. 15 percent OUTSIDE - just see how much of that expense is borne by US little Gwinnett residents.

If you support sales taxes GREAT!

Just please stop the “We are collecting and spending other peoples’ money” ruse, it’s unbecoming,but on the other hand VERY Congressional.

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GwinnettResident2001 1 year, 2 months ago

R, where are you going to go? What county in Georgia has a lower sales tax rate than Georgia? The answer is none. Gwinnett is one of seven with a 6% sales tax. All the rest are 7%, except the 8% in Atlanta.

How about Alabama? Well, most of the counties in AL are north of 6%. A few are at 5.5%. Florida? 6% or higher. SC? 6% or higher? TN? 8% or higher.

So, where are you going to go? I'm not making the argument that it's paid by outsiders. But here is what I do know. Even is only 15% of sales are made to out of County residents, I do know that 0% of property taxes are paid by out of County residents. Oh, and when you raise property taxes on commercial property, whose going to get to pay both the higher taxes on residential and the higher prices on goods because of higher property taxes? 100% of Gwinnett residents.

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kevin 1 year, 2 months ago

Gwinnett is getting way too big for its britches, and this BOC can't deal with it.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

Nice try introducing states that don't have income taxes, but that's beyond our scope here.

Thank you for confirming my point that these taxes are paid by US residents day in.... day out. Many others have bought into and repeat the urban myth that sales taxes lower burdens because "outsiders" pay, its less than truthful - if not outright bogus.

Heck just look at the presentations for the recent E-SPLOST for confirmation.

Let's look at the facts, I CAN deduct property taxes on Federal forms - daily sales taxes, not so much... Taxes masquerading as Fees, not so much either, even when my county claims they are collected for essential services like TRASH.

You're right, there is no place to go locally anyway to "escape" but that doesn't mean we have embrace and then prove the old adage that NOTHING is more "permanent" that a "temporary" anything.

SPLOSTS are supposed to be finite, they address "nice to haves", not ESSENTIAL services. Why not plan for once to retire it for a year - that's 12 months - if Gwinnett can't handle that, there is more buffoonery afoot.

Of course we could decide to join MARTA and wipe out the tax delta, that service seems to leave a few of our metro neighbors "under the bus" as it were... Or we can accept Federal dollars and start our own, being unable to stop it because we took Federal dollars...

So before we go all gun-ho on transportation, lets take a look at some other infrastructure like the county Water-Sewer system. Haven't heard? Dig a bit.

Or will we wait till after this SPLOST passes to hear, as Gomer Pyle used to say, Surprise! Surprise! Surprise! after we lock our funds on the latest SPLOST.

Many seem to look at these things independently as if they occur in a vacuum, they don't. WE see the GCPS raising millage rate, we hear the BOC may do the same and then we need to continue this?

One cent may not mean anything to some, but in reality its more like 10 cents or more, lest we forget we still haven't felt the entire impact of Gold Dome tax policies from this session yet.

(Buy or bring a car of any type from anywhere and ENJOY the new experience!)

Did I mention that the Gold Dome folks will be back at it again in about 6 months?

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kevin 1 year, 2 months ago

Why must the taxpayer have pain? Why not the politicians? The Gwinnett BOC is much more Liberal than they hold themselves out to be.

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JohnGalt 1 year, 2 months ago

Hey you two pompous idiots, I said two months - that's this month and next month, so if I say I'm leaving next month, that's two months. It is for the stupidity of people like you that the county has descended to where it is now and where it will be in the next 20 years. You've made your bed, now lay in it, or wallow in it, as the case may be. R hit the nail on the head. You're just too stupid to understand it.

And BTW, I've already found another place, and I can tell you unequivocally that it is far superior to the idiocy and arrogance that Gwinnett County has become. And I'm not complaining at all. I'm pointing out the obvious, but you really don't want, nor care, to read it. Hit a little too close to home did it?

I won't be updating you in about a year. When I leave, I'm leaving this cesspool in its entirety, and that includes the likes of you two idiots. I can always anticipate responses from those whose nerves are struck because they don't like it when people point out their short comings.

Enjoy your stay and have a good day!

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Reason 1 year, 2 months ago

As the Grease Man would say; AMF!

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Why_not 1 year, 2 months ago

I'm not surprised that the likes of you can do nothing more than hurl insults when confronted.....some things never change do they?

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Why_not 1 year, 2 months ago

The way I see it, anyone that uses the name "John Galt" doesnt have a lot of room to call anyone stupid or an idiot. But that's your mentality and I understand it. It's no wonder that the right is slipping into the abyss more each day.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

So pray-tell ... Why Not keeps slinging less than robust retorts or (gasp) insults?

The very thing that John is being accused of.

So lets discuss some more about renters not paying property taxes, shall we?

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Why_not 1 year, 2 months ago

I said "they don't pay property taxes directly."

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

Nice back pedaling move, oops you got splashed there...

Need a towel?

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Why_not 1 year, 2 months ago

Back-pedaling? Look at my original post......

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docgreen1499 1 year, 2 months ago

Knew they would find a way around the T-SPLOST getting voted down....typical government, robbing Peter to pay Paul....and Mayor of Norcross is not any better at money management....city just used $1 million to pay for 2 pieces of land..Great job done there...

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

Thats cheap ...

You could have been in the jurisdiction for newly minted Peachtree Corners.

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Reason 1 year, 2 months ago

The Regional Sales Tax was voted down in Gwinnett because why the hell would we want to join in on something we would have less control of? Like it or not, there Johnny, Gwinnett has always been the major player in road infrastructure for the entire metro region. Tell me what major road projects are going on anywhere else, other than in Gwinnett right now, or for the last 10 years, for that matter. I will vote to improve and maintain roads, parks and services, here in Gwinnett. I still mostly like it here, and if SPLOST does not pass, see what it will look like around your local roads, etc. after a year w/o upkeep. All your armchair bitching will fall on deaf ears and you can stew in your foolishness.

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JohnGalt 1 year, 2 months ago

It's John - not Johnny. You can add your name to the mix of idiots. "armchair bitching"? Really? Does that make you feel like a big boy? If you like it here, then stay. I don't. I said I am leaving and I said why I am leaving. We all have our reasons for the decisions we make. I have been here long enough to see it up close and personal, and what Gwinnett County has become is not a quality of life I care to embrace any longer as it was 25 years ago. I'm leaving, so both of our goals are accomplished.

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Why_not 1 year, 2 months ago

Ok Johnny....if you Are indeed leaving as you say, then why are you still obsessing over this issue. Just pack your things and go and let those of us that are staying hash out our differences on this issue. Or maybe you are just beating your chest in protest and not intending to leave at all.

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Sthrnldy 1 year, 2 months ago

I would not be a bit surprised if more John Galt types come here to beat their chest in celebration for finally getting the heck off this sinking ship that is Gwinnett County. The only thing he is wrong about is his prediction of a Dekalb lookalike in 20 years, most honest folks will give you 10 years maximum.

I see you worked under my friend Myers. You don't think he is thrilled to be getting out of GC? You actually believe someone of his caliber and income level has moved into his former home? Bless your heart, that money going ... Going ... GONE !!!!!

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

His posting could be called something along the lines of an exit interview. He made some observations to be considered or not - reader’s choice on what to make of the input.

Love SPLOSTS? That’s great - it really is.

Just be sure it’s marketed as a tax paid with YOUR personal cash, not some unsuspecting rube from elsewhere giving you things for “free”.

I venture to say if paying for all these services / things is something that you would be up in arms for if it came from straight up property tax some buffoonery is afoot.

I mean at the base of it all, if it’s a property tax at least you can get some discount in your Federal / State tax returns - as it is now NADA but thank you for playing!

And one last point, Sales taxes as they seem to be pitched locally are really NOT the FAIR tax concept.

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Reason 1 year, 2 months ago

25 whole years. Well, good luck at Candy Rock Mtn. Maybe there it will be Saturdays on every day with unicorns and rainbows. You know, where politicians are all on the level and nothing changes, ever...until the land speculators get elected into office. Then it all goes to heck again. We all seen it here, indeed. I'd even say without a doubt, more " up close and personal" than yourself. Run, run away. Just understand Ayn would be disappointed.

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JohnGalt 1 year, 2 months ago

No GwinnettResident2001, I don't think so. This was my Utopia when I moved here 25 years ago to get away from you people. Then all you stupid people showed up. I, John Galt, am going to do what John Galt would do. I'm going to leave you wondering not only "who is John Galt", but "where is John Galt". Good luck with your community! I'm done with this dialog.

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Why_not 1 year, 2 months ago

I just remember what the county services were like before the SPLOST versus the current levels. Some of you may prefer to go back to those levels but I for one, do not want to see that happen.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

Our current view of the world is based on the insane revenue growth of the 1980 90s. Its like workers who got used to extra overtime, until it stopped - but their budgets didn't.

Its time we realize the odds of those heady times returning any time soon is about as great as the BOC reducing the rate of Zoning condition line item outright removals / modifications from hard fought agreements at its monthly meetings.

I don't want to hear our BOC start projects while they threaten to reduce Police, Fire, EMS or court services, remember the budget fiasco while the staduim was under construction? The essential staff always seem to be the first trotted out for cost reductions. So like any other organization its time to re-evaluate to match the income of the CURRENT tax payers. Maybe even sell a trinket or two... cause you know we are.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

Buried below the fold in a reply above,

But after an announcement from Dacula ever so topical.

So before we go all gun-ho on transportation, lets take a look at some other infrastructure like the county Water-Sewer system. Haven't heard? Dig a bit.

Or will we wait till after this SPLOST passes to hear, as Gomer Pyle used to say, Surprise! Surprise! Surprise! after we lock our funds on the latest SPLOST.

Many seem to look at these things independently as if they occur in a vacuum, they don't. WE see the GCPS raising millage rate, we hear the BOC may do the same and then we need to continue this?

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SuxBeanU 1 year, 2 months ago

you actually want me to vote on raising my taxes, that's a joke, Right?I don't care what you plan to use the money for, it ain't going to happen,

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SurelyNot 1 year, 2 months ago

Poor John Galt. Running from nothing just because GC is not like it was 25 years ago. Well, for me, thank goodness it isn't. When we moved here we had no phone for about four months. For years there was nowhere to shop. There were no good restaurants except for one family style place, which sadly is no longer here. And the kids were ALL in trailers...and they were rezoned every other year. Growth has its price. If you want remote, go for it. I've had remote and don't care to return to it. Do I like to get away from traffic? Yes. That is called vacation. Do I want good medical care? Yes. That is called Gwinnett Medical and Eastside. Do I want everyone to look like me? Heavens no. That is called learning to live in the 21st century where the world is flat and a phone call away or an internet connection away...where SKPE closes our frontiers. Will I stay in GC where I have lived since 72? Yep. I'll continue to feel great pride when I am at Stone Mountain, enjoying the Gwinnett Gladiators and Gwinnett Braves; I'll celebrate family gatherings at some of the best parks in the US and will wish all the sad folks would take a hike. Sounds like you plan to do that, JG. Good luck to you as you make new friends. Play nice.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

I certainly hope your surrounding area will continue to allow you to live out that dream. Because it would best for all of us, but it ain’t all rainbows and candy canes.

I sincerely hope you take actions to protect it because the autopilot isn’t working.

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SurelyNot 1 year, 2 months ago

I have no reason to think it won't allow that to be realized for many years. At least I have no reason to think another place is better. Have a second home, too, and I know how every area has its plusses and minuses. Can't escape problems. Best to work through them and have input in the solutions.

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R 1 year, 2 months ago

Well one could take a quick trip through unincorporated Norcross...

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pondering 1 year, 2 months ago

I will vote NO on the tax. If our elected officials would spend as much time on the quality of life issues it may be a different story. Try going to the City of Lilburn Code Enforcement and get something done. Their answer is they cannot afford to enforce the codes. They do not have the man power or money. But, we are getting a new city hall and downtown. Monuments to our great elected officials they build for themselves. I have been here since 1968. Back then the city was responsive to our needs. We did not have gangs of kids roaming the streets at night. If you called about an issue, it got taken care of or you at least got an explanation why not. Now, they ignore you and say they cannot afford it. Even the police in Lilburn will tell you this, off the record of course. One Lilburn officer recently stated he was looking elsewhere for work. The officer said Lilburn is going downhill fast and the City leadership does not appear to care.

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LilburnsFuture 1 year, 2 months ago

Then keep writing until they do care. Be that squeeky wheel that gets the grease. As old as the city of Lilburn, it is sad to compare it to the downtown of Norcross, Buford, Suwanee to name a few. Yes, it was burned years ago during the civil war but seriously. Is no one committed to building a new future to this city?

So if you feel that passion, write and keep writing. They will get tired of your letters and actually do something. If nothing - run for city politics. I along with many others would support you!

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SurelyNot 1 year, 2 months ago

Just curious....how do you relate the transportation issue to Lilburn's use of city funds? I am confused. If Lilburn is not responding to the citizens' request to take care of things, then that is a local issue. But, I am also confused related to a new city hall in Lilburn. Since I don't live there, I am not so versed on what appears to be a new City complex...I know you have a wonderful newer walking trail and a nice park. Does Lilburn not take advantage of the revitalization dollars available? What h appened to the multi use proposal or the repurposing of that utilities property on 29?

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LilburnsFuture 1 year, 2 months ago

I was just as curious, but thought I would reassure pondering that the squeaky wheel gets the grease with respect to the code violation. Regardless, the new city hall rant is one of the oldest and silliest rants in existence. Lilburn's latest design was scaled down from a single entity to a shared complex with a Library (which is actually a worse compromise).

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pondering 1 year, 2 months ago

The headline used the words "Could be used". The trails and parks are used by the few not the majority. I believe they are paid for with the SPLOST. I believe the work in the downtown area is funded by SPLOT also. Squeaky wheels in Lilburn get no where. Unless you are one of the few. As NorcrossDot put it, when we can elect people that can manage the money, then I will vote for it. When we can elect people that will not lie to you just to get your vote, then yes, I will vote for it. It is not just city funds they manage. They also manage SPLOT funds.

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Pompano 1 year, 2 months ago

The shady land deal business has dried up in Gwinnett so time for a new gig. Does everyone recall the bogus $80 million rail feasibility study baked into the T-SPLOST by our county leadership? Those studies generally costs around a mil - would have made for a nice slush fund.

The puppeteer who pulls Nash's strings happens to work for one of the largest Transportation Engineering firms in the state. Nothing's changed in this county.

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SurelyNot 1 year, 2 months ago

For those who this shoe fits: where is there an area that has no issues? if areas had none, we would be in utopia. No place is perfect, Gwinnett included. But GC has as good a chance as anywhere to maintain its high standard. Why do I write that? Gwinnett Leadership, community forums, community leaders, council members you and I elect, a multitude of community activists, a multitude of long time devotees to excellence: VClark, MBeiser, LRadloff, WHill, the Britt, Snell, Williams, Pate, Sims, Moon, Shackleford, Couch, Pirkle, Mason, Everson, Briscoe, Howard, Sikes, Preston, Waters, Hinkle, Benefield, Hill, Bailey, and countless other families who have invested more heart and soul, money and time than you or I could ever have done And I am talking about real devotion. Not people lining pockets or advancing their own personal wealth at the expense of the citizens. Have we had some people who did that? Yes. Name one entity that hasn't. But I would rather be here with the salt of the earth than anywhere else. And as for the "puppeteer"...why didn't you name him/her? I think there is a lot of resentment toward people who are successful. Duh.

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Gataxpayer 1 year ago

Is there a project available? If not when will it be available?

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