The big picture in the short term

Justin Zmyewski

Houston County Board Commissioner


“The Big Picture in the Short Term” when looking at the construction of a new Houston County Highway Shop should have the following facts considered:

FACT: Houston County had a 3.52% ($385,000) tax increase in 2014. More than double the State average.

FACT: If the county board follows its past ten year history and grants employee salary increases coupled with the increase in health insurance benefits this would mean a projected 3.11% ($328,000) tax increase in 2015 to balance the budget. In 2016 it would mean a projected tax increase of 3.73% ($417,000) to make the budget balance.

FACT: The above mentioned “FACTS” equate to a projected 1.13 million dollar tax increase for Houston County tax payers over the 3 year period from 2014 – 2016 and that’s if the county doesn’t spend a penny over budget.

FACT: If the county board were to go to the tax payers to fund a new county highway shop taxes would rise 1% over the next 10 years for every 1 million dollars spent, this would be in addition to the above mentioned projected tax increases.

FACT:  A county highway shop can be built without using new tax dollars. Keep in mind that the Highway Department takes in about $196,000 a year from the Wheelage Tax that was implemented in 2013 and has over $600,000 that has been in reserve for this project.

FACT: An adequate and efficient county highway shop of quality can be built without new tax dollars it just can’t be built at the grand scale in which it is being proposed.