To keep our local governments honest, taxpayers must be vigilant and committed. So says Lee County resident Mike Sabot, who is starting a new taxpayer watchdog group in the community.
“This month, most Sumter County taxpayers were blind-sighted not with a tax increase, though it might as well have been, but by a property reassessment,” Sabot said. “Most Sumter County taxpayers saw a 25 percent to 30 percent increase in the property assessment.
“A law was passed this year in Georgia, that prohibited a reassessment for the next 2 years, but with a loop hole, if the assessment process was done prior to June 1st, it was legal.”
Sabot says Lee County landowners need to unite to ensure that a scenario similar to the Sumter County situation doesn’t occur in Lee County.
“We are a small but deeply committed non-profit organization comprised of individuals seeking accountable government that truly represents the citizenry,” he said. “Some of our city, county and school board officials seem to have forgotten that they are elected by the people to serve the people. We want our community back. We are willing to challenge bad government in order to make this a better place to live. Lee County is worth saving.”
The new association will be unveiled, so to speak, at the July 28 Lee County Commission meeting, and later at Leesburg and Smithville city council meetings. The association’s e-mail address is LeeCountyTPA@googlegroups.com. Lee County taxpayers can join the association on the Web by accessing http://groups.google.com/group/LeeCountyTPA?lnk=iggc.
LEE COUNTY TAXPAYERS ASSOCIATION
Our mission includes four important goals: education, activism, oversight and reform. To achieve this mission, we must:
· Educate the citizens of Lee County about their legal rights regarding how their property is taxed.
· Actively engage the citizens of Lee County in demanding accountability from their county government, to ensure that the property taxation process is administered fairly, uniformly and in compliance with the laws.
· Provide vigilant oversight to ensure that the citizens of Lee County can control how their tax dollars are spent, and to prevent waste, mismanagement and poor decision-making in County government.
· Achieve reform by successfully challenging the constitutionality and legality of the property tax system overall in Lee County, ultimately resulting in a fair, equitable and democratic governing process that truly represents the will of the people.