I’m beginning to understand why the Gwinnett Braves stadium deal happened.
Here is Commissioner Lorraine Green’s “tax relief” proposal.
Green said the property taxes would be replaced with a 1 percent sales tax – the homestead option sales tax, or HOST. She said she anticipates the sales tax could generate $157 million a year, enough to offer homeowners a 100 percent homestead exemption and eliminate the stormwater fee. Gwinnett County collected $242 million in property tax revenue in the 2008 fiscal year, of which $107 million came from owner-occupied residential property, Green said.
The plan would have to be approved by voters, but a referendum could appear on ballots as early as next spring. Green said she plans to push forward with this plan if elected chairwoman of the Gwinnett County Commission. She’s running against Charles Bannister, the current Commission chairman, who said he had the idea first, and Glenn Pirkle, an electrical contractor for Buford, in the Republican primary on July 15.
If the plan is approved, the sales tax would have to be collected for a year before the property taxes could be rolled back, Green said. The money collected through the sales tax would be used for capital programs – and Green said she wants to build a county-operated rail transit system to relieve traffic congestion.
Here is how this works:
Year 1 — Introduce sales tax.
Year 2 — Eliminate property tax.
Hmmm…so we are replacing one source of tax revenue with another. However, during the transition the county collects revenue from both revenue streams. Ms. Green, that’s a tax increase, coupled with a Lyle Lanley approved monorail.
But, the saddest part is that the incumbent commission chair, Charles Bannister, rather than pointing this out, claims that Green stole the idea from her. Unbelievable.
For those of you who openly complain that I write too much about Gwinnett County, I wrote this post just to piss you off. No, I’m not joking.