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Homestead Exemption For Seniors Not Available For 2017

A referendum that would decide whether or not Senior Citizens living in Villa Rica would receive an $8,000 homestead exemption will not be put before voters  until November of this year.
 
City officials had hoped that if a referendum could be placed on ballots in March-- and approved by voters-- it could benefit those 65 and older at tax time this year.  However, they now know that plan will not work out.
 
"We've spoke with our Legislative counsel and they thought it was not possible to make it retro-active for the year 2017," Villa Rica Mayor Jeff Reese told WLBB Radio Monday. "So, 2018 will be the first year that  the senior exemption would take effect if passed by voters."
 
Reese says holding a special election in March to put the referendum before voters could cost  the city around $15,000. And because an earlier vote could not help an exemption start sooner, the decision has been made to wait until election day in November. That ballot already features city-related issues, including three city council races.
 
"We did look at the option of putting this on the March ballot and it would cost the city tax payers something like $15,000 to have a special election," Reese explained. "With it not even able to take effect until 2018, I just didn't feel like it was good use of tax payer money, so it will be on the November ballot when other city issues will already be there."
 
The Senior Homestead exemption had been drawn up in late 2016/ early 2017 to replace a senior tax break that had been in effect for the previous 12 years, but declared void -- for several reasons-- in late 2016.
 
Meanwhile, Villa Rica City Council could approve a new interim-City Manager during a special called meeting Tuesday afternoon. If someone is approved today, he or she would take on the head administrator duties while the search for a permanent city manager is conducted. Officials say a thorough search could take up to six months.
 
Filed Under :
Location : Villa Rica
People : Jeff Reese