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Phillip Pinson of Gainesville polishes his 1932 Ford two-door sedan Saturday during a car show sponsored by the Madison County Cruisers in the parking lot by Danielsville City Hall. Photo by Zach Mitcham


County tax rates held steady
School taxes up 5 percent
Tax rates for the Madison County government were set Monday night at basically the same levels as last year. The rate for unincorporated areas will stay at 8.9 mills, while the rate for incorporated areas will go up .03 mills to 10.89.
The county government will net some $3.4 million off of property taxes in 1999, a growth of 3.7 percent over 1998.
Still, property taxes are just one part of the county's $8.7 million general fund revenue. In addition to property taxes, the county gets revenue from sales taxes, state and federal grants and various user fees.
While the tax rates didn't change very much, individual property owners may see a change in their tax bills depending on the change in their assessed value. Overall, the county's tax digest grew from approximately $353 million last year to $369 million this year. Most of that digest is in unincorporated areas of the county.
The difference in the incorporated and unincorporated tax rate is due to the insurance premium rollback in the county. The county government only gets taxes from unincorporated insurance premiums and rolls back the millage rate with that.

Planners reverse decision on rezoning
Opponents say approval may lead to 'trailer after trailer' on Booger Hill Road
County planners reversed an earlier decision on a controversial rezoning request Tuesday night after a crowd voiced concerns of opening the floodgates for "trailer after trailer" on Booger Hill Road.
Emotions ran high and tempers frequently flared at the Tuesday night meeting when a rezoning request by Cheryl Stuchell was brought before the commission once again. Planners first considered Stuchell's request in September, recommending by a 4 -2 vote that the board of commissioners approve it.
This time the commission - under pressure from the crowd - reluctantly voted on the matter again, reversing its earlier decision and recommending denial of Stuchell's request to rezone 6.46 acres on Booger Hill Road from A-2 (agricultural) to R-R (residential, two-acre minimum) by a narrow 4-3 margin. Commission members Gerry Burdette, Phil Munro and Bill Holloway stuck with their original decision to approve.
Stuchell has requested the rezoning so she can provide a home site for her son and daughter-in-law. She said she was confused as to why she was before the commission again.
More than 30 neighbors showed up at this second planning commission hearing on the matter.
The commission had wished to hold to their original decision and refer Stuchell's request back to the board of commissioners, who are awaiting advice from the county attorney on a covenant issue.
But they agreed to listen to public opinion on the advice of commission chairman Ralph Power, who said BOC chairman Wesley Nash requested that they do so since the hearing had been advertised to the public.
Fifteen people were allowed to speak to the commission, many voicing the same objections, saying they were opposed to it because there were covenants on all the lots in the area, which are apparently part of Wedgewood Estates, a subdivision platted in the late 1960s.
While not strictly prohibitive of mobile homes, the covenants, according to neighbor Derinda Dallmeyer, who is also an attorney, do restrict each lot to "single family dwellings."
Another point of opposition for most people seemed to be that Stuchell, who has a home on the property, intends to allow her son to place a mobile home on one parcel of the rezoned land.

MCHS to play non-region football schedule
The Madison County football team will play a non-region schedule in 2000, a move aimed at getting a struggling program on a winning track.
Madison County head football coach and athletic director Tom Hybl, whose Raider squads have posted consecutive 2-8 seasons, said Monday that the school "has definitely made the commitment to go to a non-region schedule."
The coach hopes moving to a non-region schedule will translate into more wins and more players out for the team.
"We'll be in a non-region situation next year," said Hybl. "We're hoping to get back on our feet and create some interest in football in Madison County....We're going to continue to work and get better and find some people we can compete against."
While Madison County is a Class AAA team, the number of football players on the varsity squad has resembled a Class A outfit in recent years.
Madison County, which sported just 35 players this year, was outmanned by most Region 8-AAA schools, some fielding more than twice the number of Raiders on the gridiron.
Hybl, who will return 26 players from this year's team in 2000, has until Jan. 15 to finalize next year's schedule. The coach said Madison County has tentative matchups with eight schools, including three Region 8-AAA teams, on the 2000 schedule. Hybl, who said he is seeking five home and five away games, said a season-opening home matchup with Cross Creek from Augusta next Sept. 1 appears likely. He also said the Raiders will probably face the new Barrow County high school. But Hybl chose not to give a complete rundown of likely opponents, saying that nothing on the schedule has been set in stone.

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The Madison County Journal - Danielsville, Georgia
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