Jones County possible fire tax

JONES COUNTY, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – Commissioners say they went about $200,000 over budget when building the new fire station. That money was supposed to go toward a new fire truck.

Commissioners now have to decide if they should dip into general funds or impose a new tax to raise this money.

District 4 Commissioner, Daylon Martin, said the building costs for the new station was about $140,000 more than originally planned. The concrete contractor went over about $60,000 as well, bringing the total to $200,000.

That money was supposed to go toward buying a new fire truck for the station. 

Martin said they could dip into the general fund to help reduce the cost of the truck, but that would put them below their 3 month threshold. He’s proposing another solution.

“Potentially instituting a fire fee. It’s $20 per parcel in Jones County. It’s basically a cup of coffee a month,” said Martin.

He estimates this fee would bring in about $350,000 dollars a year which would cover the cost of the truck and help buy new equipment for other fire stations.

District 1 Commissioner, Larry Childs, is a little concerned about this solution.

He hopes there will be enough money to cover the costs for their 6 year plan which includes another station and 2 sub stations. 

“”I just want to be sure that we’ve got everything in order before we try to do that because what I don’t want to do is get into something and not have enough revenue,” said Childs.

The fire station is still under construction, but it can’t open without the necessary equipment which includes the truck.

Commissioners are expected to discuss this issue at an upcoming meeting where they will decide which route to take to pay for the truck.

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