Monday, January 24, 2011

An urgent message from Councilwoman Hase.

Dear Senior Citizens, Friends:

Did you know that St Marys is the only entity in Camden County that the senior citizens have a cap on their income when it comes to receiving the $25,000 homestead exemption on their property taxes? Every senior citizen who owns property in Camden can receive the exemption unless you live in St Marys. I believe that seniors throughout our county should be treated equitably. If you agree, please contact our new State Representative, Jason Spencer, and tell him that you want to have the same advantages the rest of the seniors in Camden have. He has been presented with a house bill to put forth in the House to eliminate this cap, but he told the Mayor and I that he does not like the fact that the rest of the taxpayers in St Marys would have to carry the extra load for seniors ( the impact is minimal). He also says that the exemption should only be for the "less fortunate" seniors, not all seniors. Yet, he lives in the county and when he reaches age 62, he will have the benefit regardless of his income (and regardless of the fact the balance of the county citizens will have to carry the burden for him); but he doesn't think that all seniors in St Marys should have this exemption at age 65. My position is that Seniors of all incomes have been paying more than their fair share of taxes for years, and deserve the break, especially if the rest of Camden is getting it. Also, this puts you at a disadvantage if you want to sell your home. He suggested that we hold a referendum and vote on it; however, this would take months, and add unnecessary cost to the taxpayers when all he has to do is present it to the House of Representatives in Atlanta.

Please contact him at     and ask him to drop (i.e, "drop into the hopper;" submit for a vote - Jay) the St Marys Seniors' Homestead Exemption bill as presented to him by the City Council of St Marys. Do it today, because there is a time limit in the house for dropping local legislation. If you have questions, please feel free to contact me anytime at 673-7048. Please forward this email to St Marys seniors and citizens on your email list. I thank you for your assistance in this matter.

Respectfully, Deborah Hase, St Marys

Now, let me tell you what Deb will not. You also need to talk to Councilman Sidney Howell. He and his wife and former candidate for Spencer' seat, Rindy, are the most vocal class warriors against this bill. As you may recall, when Rindy came in third in the primary, she then endorsed Spencer. This is pure political payback. Please let the Howells know that Sidney will pay at the polls unless he contacts Spencer and releases him from this political "obligation" to oppose this bill.

Oh, and lest we forget, the other bookend is of course also opposed to the legislation. The council vote was 4 to 2 in favor. Bird's e-mail address:
Jay Moreno

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