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SPLOST may not make ballot

A new Georgia law may make it impossible for the Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax referendum to make it on the ballots in November. House Bill 540 was effective July 1 and extends the notice provision from 60 to 90 days. County attorney Rob Morton says the new law’s effective date affects the county’s decision to approve a SPLOST referendum. ’My concern is that because of ambiguity, we can’t call for election in November because we can’t meet the notice deadline,’ Morton said. ‘The call for a SPLOST vote is still technically deemed a special election,’ he said. ‘We can hold it the third Tuesday in March or we can hold in it June or November.’ Commissioners have not yet made a determination on the SPLOST referendum but will address the issue at the Aug. 31 meeting. Morton says they likely will not approve the item be added to the ballot because of the recent passage of House Bill 540. ’Based on the effective date of the new law I can’t in good faith advise my clients to proceed with the SPLOST,’ he said.

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