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County, Local Cities Reach 10-Year Sales Tax Agreement

Douglas County, Austell, Douglasville and Villa Rica have come to an agreement on the division of LOST revenues for the next 10 years: 2013 through 2022.

Cities and counties in Georgia have the opportunity to enact a one-percent Local Option Sales Tax (LOST) to provide property tax relief if a referendum by the voters is approved. Douglas County voters approved a LOST referendum in 1978, and the one-percent sales tax became effective Jan. 1, 1979.

Douglas County and the cities that lie within - Austell, Douglasville and Villa Rica - all receive a percentage of the LOST revenues, and these percentages are required to be negotiated a minimum of every 10 years. Georgia law requires that the negotiations occur within two years of every U.S. Census, and that the percentages be submitted to the Georgia Department of Revenue on or before Dec. 31.

Douglas County Commission Chairman Tom Worthan, Austell Mayor Joe Jerkins, Douglasville Mayor Harvey Persons, and Villa Rica Mayor Jay Collins are pleased to jointly announce that the County and its Cities have come to an agreement on the division of LOST revenues for the next 10 years: 2013 through 2022.

The negotiations are required to be originated by the County, which Worthan did in the Autumn of 2011. Since then, the County and Cities have gone through numerous proposals to reach the decision. Each governing body - all of which were involved in the discussions - must now adopt the percentage participation.  The City of Douglasville Mayor and Council will consider it during its Monday, Aug. 20, meeting. The Douglas County Board of Commissioners will consider it during its Tuesday, Aug. 21, meeting, and the mayors and Councils of Austell and Villa Rica will consider it during upcoming meetings.

 The percentages agreed to by the Chairman and the Mayors are as follows.

Calendar Year

Douglas County

Douglasville

Villa Rica

Austell

Total

2013

73.90%

22.40%

3.67%

0.03%

100.00%

2014

71.21%

24.65%

4.11%

0.03%

100.00%

2015

70.14%

25.40%

4.43%

0.03%

100.00%

2016

69.20%

26.19%

4.58%

0.03%

100.00%

2017

67.74%

27.33%

4.89%

0.04%

100.00%

2018

66.30%

28.47%

5.19%

0.04%

100.00%

2019

66.30%

28.47%

5.19%

0.04%

100.00%

2020

66.30%

28.47%

5.19%

0.04%

100.00%

2021

66.30%

28.47%

5.19%

0.04%

100.00%

2022

66.30%

28.47%

5.19%

0.04%

100.00%

The purpose of the LOST is to provide property tax relief. It results in a rollback of property taxes and the amount of the rollback is shown on property owners’ annual tax bill. The LOST revenues are used for general government purposes. The last LOST negotiation between Douglas County and its Cities was in 2004. The LOST remains effective until Douglas County voters repeal it.

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