Bibb County is one step closing to raising the property tax on homeowners by three mills.
Tuesday in a five to three vote, Bibb commissioners approved the increase as part of the county's $149.9 million 2018 budget.
In order to balance that budget, Mayor Robert Reichert says the county needs a three mill property tax increase to balance their budget.
A three mill increase means the owner of a $100,000 home would pay an extra $120. If a home qualifies for the homestead exemption, a homeowner would pay an additional $99 for the first $100,000 of a home’s value.
The county held their first public hearing on the proposed increase Tuesday.
Patricia Jones was concerned about this change saying she is a widow on a fixed income.
“They're going up three mills on our property tax plus they want to put all the garbage collection fees on our same bill, which is going to increase my tax property tax this year over $500,” says Patricia.
Patricia says if both increases go through, she will have to cut back on things like groceries.
Because of people like Patricia, Commissioner Mallory Jones says he wants the county to repeal their vote from March that made garbage bills annual and change it back to a quarterly bill. He says that way people are not hit with both bills at once.
“They're not able to budget for that and all these small business owners who have 10, 15, 20 rental houses. They're going to get clobbered because they're going to be paying this all at once,” says Mallory.
Mallory introduced an ordinance to make garbage bills quarterly again that was tabled. He says he is introducing another ordinance at next Tuesday’s pre-commission meeting that would make garbage bills quarterly and allow homes that are uninhabited to stop garbage services and not get billed.
Commissioners could approve Mallory’s ordinance and the three mill property tax increase at next Tuesday’s meeting.