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Montgomery Commission Continues LOST Process

The Montgomery County Commission, which met for its regular session on Monday, July 18, facilitated the process of distributing the Local Option Sales Tax (LOST) by authorizing Chairman Leland Adams and County Manager Brandon Braddy to complete renegotiates of tax percentages with the County’s participating jurisdictions.

Mayors of the seven County municipalities and County Commission representatives met June 29 to review the proposed distribution percentages. All but three of the municipalities – Ailey, Uvalda and Alston — attended the session and agreed to retain their current percentages except for the City of Mount Vernon, which disputed its 25.56 share.

Representatives from the City of Mount Vernon, including attorney Daniel O’Connor and Mayor Joey Fountain, contested the City’s proposed portion because of discrepancies with the 2020 Census. The percentages allocated to each community are based on the latest census data, and Mount Vernon officials contended that the 2020 census reported a 19% decline in the City’s population, which they disputed.

According to Montgomery County Manager Brandon Braddy, it was discovered the City of Mount Vernon’s distribution was not calculated correctly under the current distribution agreement dated July 23, 2012. The 2012 agreement was calculated based on the 2010 Census. The City of Mount Vernon should have received 26.87% but was receiving 25.56%. The Mount Vernon officials asked for a 1.31% increase to bring their allocation to what they should have originally received based on the 2010 census.

On July 18, County Commissioners agreed to take this 1.31% from the County’s at-large percentage of 54.18% and add it to Mount Vernon’s share. The County, as the representative for unincorporated areas, receives the biggest allocation, with the City of Mount Vernon getting the next highest amount.

Other municipalities in the County receiving percentages of the LOST funds are: Uvalda, 6.55%; Ailey, 6.03%; Higgston, 3.54%; Alston, 1.74%; Tarrytown, .98%; and, Vidalia (through the annexation of a section of Montgomery County as an industrial site with some residential areas), 1.42%. The three municipalities not attending the June 29 session were contacted by Braddy to inform them of the discussions that took place at the June 29 meeting. These cities, that were absent, agreed for the certificate of distribution to remain the same.

Braddy said the next step in the process is to forward a new Certificate Of Distribution to all of the municipalities within the County for their signatures. The certificate must be submitted to the state Department of Revenue, which dispenses the allocations, by December 30.

Board Appointments

The Commissioners approved the following appointments: Macon Beard, incumbent, to seat one on the Montgomery County Board of Tax Assessors for a four-year term (August 8, 2022-January 1, 2026); Daniel Chadwick “Chad” Harrison, to seat two on the Montgomery County Board of Tax Assessors for a five-year term (September 27, 2022-January 1, 2027); Lydia Adams, incumbent, to the Montgomery County Board of Family & Children Services, for a fiveyear term (July 1, 2022-July 1, 2027); Sheila Braddy, to Seat 3B, Montgomery County Library Board, for a three-year term (July 1, 2022-July 1, 2025); Martha Boyer, to seat 4B on the Montgomery County Library Board, for a thee-year term, (July 1, 2022-July 1, 2025).

Purchase, Bid Approvals and Other Business

The Commission approved the following: A request to advertise for bids on the construction of a new Emergency Medical Services building; A capital lease purchase of a 2022 John Deere 410L backhoe loader with BancorpSouth Equipment Fi- nance; Declaration as surplus property and authorization to auction the property on a 2005 Uni mog front loader and backhoe with Freightliner chasis.

A quote of $10,200 to Georgia Correctional Industries for 172 speed limit road signs and posts.

A quote of $7,850.00 from Herndon Painting and Pressure Washing of Rentz for painting the interior of the Health Department building.

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