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Flowery Branch will not increase tax rate next year
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Hear City Planning Director James Riker and City Manager Bill Andrew discuss improvements to Spout Springs Road at Holland Dam Road and Stonebridge Village shopping center.

FLOWERY BRANCH — The Flowery Branch City Council voted to keep its 2008-09 tax rate the same Wednesday morning.

The council OK’d a 2.837 millage rate, with 1 mill equal to $1 for each $1,000 in taxable property value. Properties are assessed at 40 percent.

The council voted after holding a public hearing, at which no one showed up to speak.

Council members Allen Bryans Sr., Pat Zalewski and Mary Jones voted for the rate. Chris Fetterman and Craig Lutz voted against it.

The city could have reduced the rate to 2.835 mills and generated the same total revenue on the current year’s digest that last year’s tax rate produced. The 2.837 rate will generate about $90,000 more in revenues.

Because it chose to go with the higher rate, the council had to hold three public hearings.

No one attended to speak at any of the hearings, and no council members commented on the tax rate Wednesday.

At an earlier meeting, Fetterman talked about dropping the rate to 2.637 mills, saying he is a "pro low-tax, anti-tax kind of person."

At that same meeting, Bryans spoke in support of keeping the rate the same.

"The police department has a lot more area to patrol ... and the roadwork we need to do in the city would easily eat up that (extra money)," he said. "And this way, we’re not increasing taxes on people."

In other business Wednesday, City Council voted to contract with Paulson Mitchell in Roswell for engineering services related to roadwork on Spout Springs Road at Holland Dam Road and the Stonebridge Village shopping center.

 The city is looking to widen Holland Dam Road at Spout Springs to allow for easier turns in and out of the road and extend a sidewalk that is now running on Holland Dam between Falcon Fitness and the Publix grocery store to Spout Springs Road.

The project also involves making some sidewalk and curb changes on Spout Springs to give motorists more space in making a U-turn on Spout Springs at the traffic light at Stonebridge Village.

A shopping center anchored by Publix also shares that light.

The contract will cost the city $8,150.

The project could cost $25,000 to $35,000, city Planning Director James Riker has said.

The expenses are in this year’s city budget, officials said.

City Council also voted to approve a beer license application for the BP gas station at 5840 Spout Springs Road.


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