We have had several public meetings at various locations across the county. I think the consensus is that a public uproar has occurred. I think I can speak for everyone that reads this commentary.
Recently, a friend and I attempted to attend a meeting at the Georgia Mountains Center in an effort to be better informed about the county's budget woes. We arrived about 15 minutes prior to the scheduled meeting time and, to our surprise and disappointment, we were refused entrance to the meeting along with several hundred other taxpayers. I mention this to let the reader know I am ill-informed due to no fault of my own. However, please bear with an ill informed taxpayer's perspective.
How many of the commissioners would consider working with pay and forfeit their salaries to help the budget?
On a recent Saturday morning, I decided to take my little dog for a walk at God and Chicopee's greatest gift to Gainesville, Chicopee Woods hiking trails. What a way to start the day, breathing the fresh air and enjoying the new spring growth.
The letters to the editor in Saturday's Times provided the clearest possible illustration of the depths to which the Republican anti-tax obsession has degenerated.
In a June 10 article, the AJC reported some interesting statistics regarding Georgians dying needlessly because "they are too far from a trauma center." No doubt these statisticians could prove that Rhode Island is seven times bigger than Texas. As a result, most of the information contained in the article is typical of how so-called intelligent and knowledgeable people attempt to dupe us so-called ignorant and unawares into buying their white elephants.
When individuals and families are faced with reduction in income, they must of necessity reduce spending for their families' sake. When businesses encounter reduction in revenue, they take stock and cut spending for their stakeholders.
I live and own property in the North Hall area and was born and raised here. My family has lived and worked in Hall County several generations back.
I had begun to think my household was the only one in Hall County who doesn't want a tax hike or can't afford one and knows the issues we face fall at the feet of the ego-laden Board of Commissioners.
I am frustrated with talk of people willing to support a tax hike to save parks. In case anyone has missed it, the recession is still in full swing. People are still out of work and homes are still being foreclosed on. To increase property taxes now will only exacerbate the foreclosure problem that has contributed to the loss of more than $20,000 in my home's value the last four years.
The age-old debate over free will and determinism is as relevant today as ever. If we have significant amounts of free will, then people deserve what they get, now and forever. Punishment is justified. We may offer conditional forgiveness and second chances, but it will be limited and temporary.
On behalf of the State Bar of Georgia, I offer condolences to the family, friends and colleagues of Samuel L. "Sam" Oliver of Gainesville on his recent, untimely passing.
Boy, the pressure is really starting to build up at warp speed. I feel as if I am standing on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange and the market is crashing. I am the point man for my entire family and I am the one who is ultimately responsible for its well being.
If Hall County increases the property tax, it will not have much impact on my standard of living and I doubt if it will have any impact on most of the commissioners.
It is my hope that the property tax-paying citizens of Hall County will look very closely at what the commissioners are trying to do.
Thank you, Paige Mellinger, for your letter to the editor "Support your library and the good it does a community" appearing Thursday in The Times.
After reading The Times' article regarding Tommy Lee Waldrip and the hideous crime he committed against the young Dawsonville man, Keith Evans, 23 years ago, I am still in disbelief of our so-called "justice" system.
Another budget year and another disappointment for our library system and its patrons. Our county officials' spending on website redesign and an energy study, with unused results, instead of providing funding needed to take county agencies off of furlough toes the line of malfeasance, a word I learned from a children's picture book that I read at my library ("Olivia and the Fairy Princesses" by Ian Falconer).
I spent 60 years in newspapering in Anderson, S.C., Athens and The Atlanta Times, and 50 years in radio and television throughout the South. I write this to salute Gainesville and its vast medical community as nationally prominent in heart research. I owe my life to cardiologists there and couldn't dare name them all, but one, Dr. Jeffrey Marshall, has not only been a great doctor but a great mentor to let me pursue my career after suffering mightily.
I retired from coaching after 15 seasons in the NFL. I started off coaching five seasons as a high school coach in New Mexico and in Fremont, Calif. The Hall County football teams are extremely well coached. I often stand just outside the fence watching our incredibly competent coaches work. Hall County is a perfect place for a retired coach to live if he wants high-quality football every Friday night during the high school football season.
Here we go again, folks. Cormac J. Carney, a U.S. district judge, ruled California's death penalty unconstitutional. He called the death penalty an "empty promise that violates the Eighth Amendment's protection against cruel and unusual punishment." This was brought on by a death row inmate.
I vaguely remember when voting Republican meant you were virtually assured of candidates who supported policies that promoted limited government and lower taxation. Obviously, this is no longer the case.
In response to Joan King's column of July 1: I'm tired of reading and responding to her ill- and misinformed rants about nuclear power, and specifically, Georgia Power's Plant Vogtle nuclear units Nos. 3 and 4, now under construction.
On behalf of the State Bar of Georgia, I wish to express condolences to the family, colleagues and many friends of Gainesville attorney E. Wycliffe "Wyc" Orr on his recent and very untimely passing.
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