ATLANTA - A sheriff millage proposal will be on the August primary election ballot in Montmorency County, as the language was approved by the board of commissioners during Wednesday's meeting.
Sheriff Don Edwards requested that personal property taxes be increased by one mill, which he said is equal to $1 per $1,000 of taxable value of all property. He requested the millage last for a period of five years, starting in 2012 and ending in 2016.
Edwards said the millage will pay for the cost of at least four additional road patrol officers, one drug/narcotics enforcement officer, patrol vehicles, equipment, related expenses, vehicle maintenance and half of the expenses for a public service clerk.
The amount of revenue the county will collect if the millage is approved and levied by the county in the first year is estimated to be $500,000 for a new additional millage, the revenue from which would be disbursed to Montmorency County.
Edwards also said the sheriff department millage will pay for deputies to be on the road 24 hours per day, seven days per week, with four additional officers. A deputy will be assigned to Atlanta, Hillman and Lewiston 40 hours per week and will work closely with township officials and be proactive in animal control issues, including picking up stray dogs, which has been an issue in the county.
"It will be beneficial to our area; it's a well-rounded program. Most counties already have a millage in place for law enforcement," Edwards said.
The board approved the millage language. Commissioner Brock Baggett agreed with Edwards and said the millage is something the county needs.
"I'm all for public safety, but let's let the public decide," he said.
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