Macon-Bibb commissioners discuss possible new penny sales tax

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) -Sales taxes in Macon-Bibb county could go up in the next couple of years. Macon-Bibb Commissioners are looking to adopt another penny sales tax.

“It’s a mechanism so that we can provide some sort of property tax relief,” said Commissioner Gary Bechtel, also Chairman of the Operations and Finance Committee.

The Optional Local Option Sales Tax (OLOST) is aimed to provide that relief.

“It’s an option that exists only for consolidated governments,” said Bechtel.

The OLOST would work just like the Special Project Local Options Sales Tax (SPLOST), but the money would be used differently.

“It’s an opportunity for property owners to receive some relief and have people who visit, travel, or work here from other counties pay to provide that property tax relief,” said Bechtel.

This means, millage rates, could go down. For example, Commissioner Bechtel says one 1 mil is equal to $4million. If the county collects $28 million from OLOST in 12 months, that’s equal to a 7 mil rollback.

“Property tax owner would get what amounts to a freeze, if they have homestead, and then a potential rollback,” said Bechtel.

The county would have to get a legislation signed by the Governor before this penny tax is added to the ballot in November of 2018. If passed, property owners, could see that potential rollback by 2020.

Next week, Tuesday October, 17th, commissioners will vote to hire a law firm that has worked with Columbus-Muscogee County, who has OLOST, to get advice.

Categories: Bibb County, Local News

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