MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) -- Christmas came early for the Macon-Bibb County Consolidation Transition Task Force Finance Committee in the form of a $50,000 check from the Peyton Anderson Foundation and NewTown Macon.
"That is something we are really grateful for and that says your community is behind you," says Chair Pearlie Tolliver.
Not everyone is so quick to pull out their wallets. Last week, Macon City Council's Approriations Committee voted down an ordinance that would pull $250,000 from the city's reserve fund to cover part of the cost of consolidation.
Macon City Councilman Tom Elligton got a few laughs when Tolliver asked him about the no-vote.
"I'm shocked that this would come up," said Councilman Tom Ellington, jokingly.
Ellington says it's pretty clear from the consolidation charter, the city will have to pay up.
"We can go ahead pay what we owe now, which I think is the wise course of action or we can wait and pay what we owe and also the legal fees that are likely to be associated with not paying in a timely manner," says Ellington.
State Representative Nikki Randall says she saw this coming.
"I knew there was going to be some opposition because there was much opposition on the council to the consolidation, period," says Randall.
At the meeting Wednesday morning, the task force's budget was bumped up from $388,164 to $530,126. Money requests approved included $57,320 for the Technology Committee, $22,500 for the Finance Committee, $25,500 for the Facilities Committee, and $20,000 for the Human Resources Committee. The Communications Committee made a request for $62,142 which was approved at the meeting, but that's only if a grant for the full amount of the request is received.
"I estimate the final budget won't go over $600,000 but that's just an educated guess," says Tolliver.
Tolliver is confident, whatever the final number is, the city will pay their fair share.
"It's the season to jolly. So I think everyone is going to look at what's out there an try to do what's best for our community," she says.
The Middle Georgia Regional Commission has been sending out invoices to both the city and the county, which are being paid. In the meeting, committee members suggested getting together a schedule for payments from the city and the county going forward so they'll know what they're paying for.
All of the recommendations made by the Finance Committee will be voted on by the full task force at the next meeting.