To the editor:
Unfortunately, Mr. Jim Dickson continues to espouse that Rep. Tom Taylor and I have taken away people’s right to vote for Fire and Emergency Management Services in Dunwoody. [“Changes to city charter a ‘power grab,’ Dunwoody Reporter, May 2-15.]
We have a legal opinion that states under home rule in the Georgia Constitution the city council can change how we provide these services. We can’t limit what the operating cost will be but we put in statute that it is the intent of your legislators that the operating cost not exceed the prior five-year average cost. To date, Mr. Dickson has furnished no contrary legal opinion.
I believe the city will only take this action if DeKalb tries to substantially increase our current cost or service levels deteriorate.
The 3.04 millage cap that Mr. Dickson refers to is for city services – see your property tax bill. Fire and EMS are a separate line item on your property tax bill. Former Sen. Dan Weber, the author, has confirmed on several occasions that this cap applies to city services, not Fire and EMS. Again Mr. Dickson refuses to accept this.
Former Sen. Weber and I also provided in prior legislation that if we take over Fire and EMS, then the cost of each fire station is $5,000.
Finally, the power grab as alleged by Mr. Dickson is a case of one man’s opinion. He is certainly entitled to his viewpoint but the facts do not bear out his conclusions. I consider this matter closed.
Sen. Fran Millar
Fran Millar (R-Dunwoody) represents District 40 in the Georgia Senate.