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Tax assessors board chairman steps down

By Sherri Ellington Pike County tax assessor chairman Matthew Tomarchio has stepped down, leaving the position open. His term was to have ended in 2014. In addition, the assessor’s office is seeking part-time help with one of its staffers about to go out on maternity leave. Both vacancies are to be advertised. ’I hope we’ll find someone as capable as he was,’ said member Frank Goforth. The chairmanship is unpaid while the part-time position will be minimum wage. In Tomarchio’s absence at the Dec. 4 meeting, assessors led by vice chairman Bob Marriott continued talking about policy addition of self-disclosure forms with tax assessments allowing people to report changes more easily. County attorney Tom Morton said a policy is needed on records retention due to a new court ruling that could affect any potential litigation. ’Some states are starting to draft legislations on what records must be kept,’ Morton said, noting minutes of closed sessions must now be kept under Georgia law. E-mails that could be subpoenaed were a particular topic. ’We shouldn’t be conducting board business on our personal computers,’ said Marriott. It was noted that, due to an appeals process that ends up in Superior Court anyway, most of the assessor’s decisions would not likely end up as a court case. ASSESSORS ALSO: ’¢ Heard the Jeffery King hearing on his denied Conservation Use Valuation Act application was postponed from Nov. 30. ’¢ Agreed to close the office Dec. 21 for a two-hour lunch for staff members. ’¢ Declined to reverse a $2,000 penalty for Blue Ridge Stone Company. ’¢ Revised fair market value assessments for Southern Built Construction and Gary Alford Homes, which both had equipment listed the companies lease or do not have. ’¢ Deleted the account of B&M Truck Repair, which has moved out of Pike County. ’¢ Agreed to bill Dollar General for mis-grouped property but withheld a penalty. ’¢ Cancelled the Dec. 18 meeting and moved the January meetings down a week to Jan. 8 and 22 due to the holidays. ’¢ Heard pre-bills for mobile homes will be mailed by Jan. 5.

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