Most governments collect fire protection fees through property taxes — it’s 1.669 mills in unincorporated Floyd County — but Cave Spring doesn’t levy taxes.
Mayor Rob Ware said Thursday the city’s fire department is funded through its water department billing, but about 40 “properties with structures of value” don’t have service for one reason or another. If one were to catch fire, firefighters would respond.
“So they’ve got the coverage without paying for it,” Councilman Ken Landers said.
Plans are to bill the owners $10 a month for the service. A first reading of the ordinance is scheduled for the Council’s Tuesday meeting. A public hearing and adoption could come as early as January, with an effective date of Feb. 1.
City Attorney Zach Burkhalter is fine-tuning provisions, such as penalties for non-payment, and City Clerk Judy Dickinson said she’ll notify affected property owners by mail.
“It’s not going to bring in much more revenue, but it’s important to collect it because we’re billing everyone else in town,” Ware said.
The Council meets at 6 p.m. Tuesday at City Hall, 10 Georgia Ave.
Council members agreed to move forward with the fee during a called work session Thursday afternoon.
Councilwoman Peggy Allgood also announced an archeological dig at the historic Log Cabin is scheduled for Dec. 17 –21.
The cabin, discovered two years ago under the façade of the old Green Hotel downtown, likely dates to the early 1800s. Allgood said a master archaeologist will guide volunteers in excavating areas that may give clues to its origin.
A pledge drive has been launched to raise the $6,400 for the dig, which is still being planned. Donations may be sent to the Cave Spring Historical Society, P.O. Box 715, Cave Spring, Ga. 30124. For more information, call Allgood at 706-777-8789.