Letters To The Editor

Dear Editor,

On April 1st in the “Hey Henry” section there was quip concerning the Tax Commis-sioner’s office having the authority to “increase property taxes” and since I’m not sure if that was an opinion from an uninformed citizen or a taunt, an April fool’s joke if you will, I thought I would set the record straight to the duties, tasks and responsibilities of the Tax Commissioner’s office.

The Tax Commissioner’s office is one of four constitutionally elected offices in the county; Tax Commissioner, Sheriff, Clerk of Court and Probate Judge. All four offices serve a four year term and run concurrent with the United States Presidential term. The Tax Commissioner has authority to bill, collect and disburse property taxes (For the official explanation of the Tax Commissioner’s duties, refer to the Official Code of Georgia Annotated 48-5-127).

Property taxes are determined by taking 40% of the current year’s fair market value (fair market is determined by the Tax Assessor, with the citizen’s right to appeal) less qualified exemptions (Homestead, etc.), if they exist, and multiplying that net value by the millage rates set by the governing boards (1) State of Georgia, (2) Board of Commis-sioners, (3) School Board, (4) County Water Authority and in the case of the City of McDon-ough, (5) the City Council.

As well, public hearings are held prior to these boards determining the current year’s millage rates. At no point in this process does the Tax Commis-sioner determine the Property Value nor the millage rate, therefore, having no voice in determining the amount of taxes due.

In today’s world we are all inundated with a daily flood of information. At the Tax Commissioner’s office we try to make it as simple and easy to understand as possible because we recognize the citizen’s time is limited.

We encourage our citizens to follow us on Twitter and Facebook for the latest news and updates.

Our Vision for the Henry County Tax Commissioner’s office is simple; to be THE Premier Tax Commissioner’s office in Georgia.

Our Mission, Provide Henry County citizens excellent customer service by helping them understand and meet their responsibilities while applying tax law with integrity.

We strive every day to be the leader in the state with respect to efficiency, responsiveness, customer service and to be visionary. Our results speak volumes. On the same day the Hey Henry comment was published we opened our second Motor Vehicle Kiosk, first in the state using a corporate partner (Kroger, Ellenwood – For more information please go to our website). This technology allows citizens to renew their tags on any day of the week during Kroger’s normal operating hours.

In closing, I would like to add I am here to serve at the pleasure of the Henry County citizen(s). It is an honor and privilege to be elected to this office and if I can ever be of assistance I encourage them to reach out to me. My direct line is 770-288-8156, personal cell 678-672-7456, email; dcurry@co.henry.ga.us.

David Curry