Columbia County needs improvement input

By: Stephanie Baker
By: Stephanie Baker

You could get a chance to make decisions on where your tax dollars are going.

Columbia County plans to spend millions of dollars on improvements, ranging from public safety to road projects.

The county expected to have the money for these projects once it was united under one city government, but legislators never introduced the consolidation bill to make that happen.

Thursday night, about fifty taxpayers told the county how they feel about footing the bill for these improvements.

Eden vickory wants improvements, even if she has to pay extra.

"We feel like our community has waited long enough and it's time to put this on the plan," said Vickory.

For Vickory and many others, storm water is the big issue.

But three other categories also affect people every day.

Road improvements make up about a fourth of the $40 million Columbia County plans to spend. There are about nine roads across the area they want to work on.

The money could also pay for equipment for fire and HAZMAT teams and improvements for public parks.

Columbia County Improvement Categories
Storm water
Road improvements
Firefighter/HAZMAT equipment
Public park improvements

Anyone in the county can tell commissioners which of those improvements they care about most, in a survey that also asks if residents would vote on a property tax increase.

You can download the survey online at www.columbiacountyga.gov.

"[With the money,] improvements would obviously get done quicker and [taxpayers] would enjoy the benefits of those improvements," said county administrator Steve Szeblewski.

In all, there would be 29 improvements countywide. Eden Vickory is willing to pay up since the process gives her a voice.

"The Capital Improvements plans tell the county what the rest of the people want for their districts," Vickory said.

You can expect to see a referendum on November's ballot to vote on the tax increase.

In the meantime, the county plans to hold two more meetings, one on May 11th and one June 8th, to get more feedback.


Mailing Address: P.O. Box 1212 Augusta, GA 30903 Main Telephone: (803) 278-1212 Newsroom: (803) 278-3111 Fax: (803) 442-4561
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