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Gainesville City Council approves excise tax agreement
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Gainesville City Council voted Tuesday on an agreement with other local governments that will allow them to collect a 2 percent sales tax from local manufacturers on their energy use.

State lawmakers, seeking ways to attract more industry, decided earlier this year to phase out the tax over a four-year period.

If local governments charge the excise tax, manufacturers will still stop paying the 4 percent sales tax on their energy use that once went to the state. They will also still pay the 1 percent sales tax for local education initiatives.

In another matter, the council approved leasing a hangar at Lee Gilmer Memorial Airport to the Georgia State Patrol for five years.

The hangar will house two helicopters used to assist local emergency responders in a 28-county area.

Previously, the helicopters were housed in Athens. For the past few months, the agency has operated out of the Gainesville airport, working on a month-to-month lease with the city until a more permanent agreement could be reached.

The Georgia Department of Public Safety’s board now will also have to vote to confirm the new deal.

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