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City unofficially approves millage rate

COVINGTON, Ga. - The Covington City Council made a consensus, or unofficial vote, to keep the city’s millage rate the same as last year’s.

The millage rate would be 7.65 and the city agreed to take the current millage instead of the rollback rate.

The legal advertisement, featured in this week’s edition of The Covington News labels the millage rate as a tax increase. The decision will appear as a tax increase, but that is only because the tax digest went up this year, not because the city is raising the taxes.

“When we got the tax digest, based on our current millage rate of 7.65 mils our tax levy would be $4,805,669,” City Manager Leigh Anne Knight said.

The extra funds would go towards the city’s surplus, she said.

Knight said the city’s financial department would like to continue to see the millage rate stay the same until the tax levy amount would be the same amount as its highest point, around $6 million, which was in 2009.

“If y’all (the council) could see to leave the millage rate at what it is right now, 7.65, then that would be, you know, a benefit to the revenue streams as they come in,” she said.

Mayor Ronnie Johnston said the council’s consensus to keep the millage rate the same was done strictly for advertising purposes, which is required by the state. The council can still change its mind and vote to use the rollback millage rate, which would not implement a tax increase, when it comes time to vote on July 31.

The rollback rate would be 7.483 mils and would levy $4,698,305.