The Dunwoody City Charter Commission opted against recommending removal of the city’s maximum tax millage and discussed recommending changes to mayor and City Council term limits.
The tax rate can only be set above 3.04 if a majority of voters approve it, according to the city charter. The cap has been in place since the city’s incorporation in 2008. Residents who opposed the recommendation said voters should make changes to the millage rate, not the commission.
The commission will vote on whether to recommend changes to the charter’s term limits at its next meeting on Sept. 21. The commission is a group of appointed residents that reviews the charter and can recommend changes to the Georgia General Assembly. The review must be completed by Nov. 9.
During the commission’s Aug. 31 meeting, the motion to recommend changing the millage cap failed because it did not get seconded.
When the commission passes recommendations, those recommendations go to the Georgia General Assembly for approval. If the recommendations are approved by the state, the commission’s changes would officially become part of the charter. The mayor and council appointed some members of the commission, but have no role in the commission’s decisions and do not vote on its recommendations.
The commission discussed adding term limits for council members and increasing the number of terms the mayor could serve. Council members now have unlimited terms and the mayor can serve two, four-year terms.
“I’m not a big fan of unlimited terms for any elected office,” commission member Amy Swygert said. “I just think it breeds complacency, but I also have great respect for institutional knowledge.”
Swygert suggested the commission vote on whether to recommend a three-term limit for council members at its next meeting, scheduled for Sept. 21.
Commission member Anne Hicks suggested upping the mayor’s term limit to three as well, so the mayor could have a better ability to make long-term plans for the city.