House passes ‘moocher’s protection act’

[private]The Georgia House passed legislation Tuesday that would prohibit local governments from including invoices for water and trash collection fees in the same mailings with property tax bills.

An opponent of the measure called it the “moocher’s protection act” because she said the bill will enable homeowners to avoid having to pay the fees they owe for government services.

HB 204 passed 111-61, however, with supporters contending that homeowners should not have liens placed against their property simply for not paying a government fee.

”It’s not right to take a person’s house because of a water bill,” said Rep. Penny Houston (R-Nashville).

“This bill is the moocher’s protection act,” Rep. Stacey Abrams (D-Atlanta) said. “This bill means you’re going to have to pay what someone else decided they didn’t have to pay their fair share for.”

“This is not government overreach, this is government doing the job it’s supposed to do,” Abrams said.

The bill was opposed by the Association County Commissioners of Georgia (ACCG), a group that usually has a lot of influence over the passage of legislation.

“I’m not anti-local government, I’m a product of local government,” said Rep. Brett Harrell, the former mayor of Snellville. “But I come down on the side of the homeowner.”

© 2017 by The Georgia Report

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Tags: ACCG , local government bills