Thursday, July 24, 2008

Fulton Sends Funds To Milton Coffers

by Jason Wright / Appen Newspapers

MILTON-- City Council had a little spring in its step July 7 after learning that Fulton County had given the city the more than $4.1 million in Special Service District funds.The money comes from taxes paid by North Fulton residents for county services before incorporation or annexation. Johns Creek will receive $2.85 million, while Alpharetta and Roswell will receive $336,899 and $220,778, respectively.

"It's not every Monday you get a $4 million check for the city," quipped Councilwoman Karen Thurman at Monday's council meeting.There is a problem, however, said City Manager Billy Beckett. According to numbers given to Milton by Fulton County in August 2007, the city should have had more than $5.3 million in the bank, he said. Beckett said he's currently drafting a letter to Fulton County Manager Zachary Williams to learn why there was an administrative decision to adjust the amount."I like documentation outlining their methodology," said Beckett.According to a May 30 memorandum from Patrick O'Connor, Fulton County's Finance director, the total given to Milton was "excluding... known liabilites such as the Providence Park clean up costs."

Providence Park, located in Milton but still owned by Fulton, has been closed since January 2004 for groundwater cleanup. The park remains closed until reopening is OK'd by the Georgia Environmental Protection Division, which could take until 2010, according to Angela Parker, director of the Fulton County Department of Public Works.Beckett said he'd heard a rumor that is why the check didn't match the original amount, and felt it wasn't fair given Milton doesn't own the park."I feel it's not appropriate to penalize us for something known to the county since 2004," he said.

Council has not gotten together to discuss what to do with the money yet, but Beckett said he would suggest single-time costs like a tanker truck for fire protection, land purchases for parks, intersection improvements and funding the state-mandated operating reserve.Thurman said the money came at a time when it was "very much needed" given Milton's funding crunch to try and pay for better services than residents' received prior to incorporation. Council is aware of that distinction thanks to a citizen survey sent out in March. However, that same survey indicated overwhelmingly that taxes should not be increased."If we could get about three times that [$4.1 million], it would be great," said Thurman.


Anonymous said...

This is old news, at least two weeks old.

Anonymous said...

Cant't wait to see what "The Council" and Ch2M spend the $4M on. Has any taxpayer seen the new $50k "Public Satey" vehicle they bought? How about the $45k+ Canine Tahoe?

Let's get a scuba team while we are buying stuff.

Anonymous said...


Shame on them for trying to protect us and our city.

If I, or someone in my family, has an issue I wish they didn't have this new stuff and we could go back to the way it was before and maybe we just wouldn't make it. But hey, it would save money!

Anonymous said...

The way it was before.... Prior to 1/1/2007? Hmmm...Let us see

Virtually no crime, all fires were put out, the roads were taken care of, and there was no "agenda". ALL of this was done with less. Yes, Less. Please tell me from who or what "they" are "protecting" us.

Remember the complaint that we wanted our funds to stay here? Well guess what Mr. Smarty Pants, they are. Unfortunately, we started out by spending as if we had a huge tax base or reserve fund. Well, we did not and still do not. So it is simple really, either spend less or take more from the people. Frankly, I am for the first option.

Maybe you are one of today’s American's who live in an apartment, drive a brand new Mercedes, have a 100" plasma television, have all the TV channels you can get, and only pays the monthly minimum on all 33 of your credit cards. Seems to be how Milton wants to operate.

As for a PUBLIC SAFETY TRUCK F250 or F350 and a brand new TAHOE for the K-9 to protect me, PUH-LEASE!

I guess you are the person who’s family's house burned down 20 years ago and I suppose $90,000-$100,000 worth of additional trucks (pick-up and SUV) would have prevented it.

Anonymous said...

The person you describe is what old people refer to as 10 cent millionaires.

Anonymous said...

Well put. True wisdom.