Commissioner Steve Taylor had a lot to discuss Wednesday during the October public meeting to address official county business. The first item on Taylor’s list was to award the 2015 ACCG Legislative Service Award to Rep. Paul Battles.
Battles is the chairman of the House Retirement Committee and one of his districts includes Bartow County. He also serves on committees such as the House Appropriations, Economic Development and Tourism, Motor Vehicles, and Ways and Means.
Battles recently authored and carried HB 202 during the 2015 legislative session, a bill which is the significant property tax reform legislation he was a part of for three years. This property tax had huge implications to local taxpayers by improving the property tax appeals process.
“ACCG worked for many years to alleviate some of the administrative challenges counties faced with their property tax systems,” said ACCG Legislative Director Clint Mueller.
“Representative Battles worked with us for the entire duration of the process to help see the proposed reforms come to fruition.”
Battles, being a chairman of the House Retirement Committee, was instrumental in the passage of HB 217. In 2015, this legislation was one of ACCG’s priorities, authorizing local governments to continue investing pension assets in mutual funds.
The next major order of business during the commissioner’s meeting concerned six poultry houses that were seeking approval to be built on Spring Place Road. There were lots of speakers who opposed this notion and all had property that surrounded the potential poultry house building zone.
Those who opposed the poultry houses cited reasons ranging from air pollution, dust, traffic and vermin to decreased property value — and it did not stop there. The next opponent had land to the southeast, which he purchased for the wildlife and wetlands nearby.
His concerns were directly related to two state water streams that go directly through a detention pond and ran under where the poultry houses would be built. After a few drawings provided by both the concerned citizen and the potential landbuyer for his poultry business, Taylor agreed with the council vote.
As long as the streams were not state water, the application to build on the land would be accepted. Taylor also stated clearly that six, and only six, poultry houses could be built on the land.
The final major business to address was the plan to build a skydiving facility in the heart of Taylorsville. Gene Cantrell, concerned landowner across the street from the potential facility, was pleased to hear that the council did not vote in favor of Skylift LLC.
The skydiving company did not have any members speak at the public meeting, and Taylor decided to deny the request for Skylift LLC to operate on the 209 acres of land on Collum Road.
“We shot ’em down, 100 percent,” Cantrell said.