State Rep. Rick Jasperse (l) addresses Superintendent Carlton Wilson. Jasperse asked the school board to re-open the always contentious topic of tax exemptions for seniors, just one of the highly-charged subjects that came up during the called meeting Friday.
In the normally staid world of school board discussions, it’s fair to say that Friday’s called meeting featured one bombshell after another, including drastic changes to the calendar, moving graduation ceremonies to evenings, arming staff members, shortening the elementary school day and re-opening the always contentious senior tax exemption debate, with a little beef between the board chair and superintendent thrown into the mix.
The board did not take any action, but it looked like a decision on changing graduation times was coming soon and they are scheduled to see a policy for arming staff presented at their regular meeting this week. Here are the highlights of the meeting which ran all morning at the central office.
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Quarry tours were a big hit again at this year's Marble Festival. Check out the print or e-edition for two full pages of photos from the event.
Although final numbers had not been calculated, Pickens Chamber Executive Director Amberle Godfrey said attendance for the 39th annual Georgia Marble Festival was up over last year, and she and other organizers have heard nothing but positive comments about the event.
“Everything went very well,” she said. “We’ve heard a lot of compliments from people who attended, and people who said they thought it was very well organized.”
The fact that Appalachian Superior Court Judge Mary Elizabeth Priest said she left the bench more confused is a clear indicator of the complexity of a property value dispute that stretches back eight years.
The arguments last Wednesday were the latest in an ongoing back-and-forth between property owners Jack and Annette Williams and the Pickens County Tax Assessors Office. The Williamses, who own a large home on Firetower Road, have filed appeals on their property value every year since 2011. It took seven years for their first appeal to be heard in court, which happened last November.
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PHS student Jessi Griffin, ladies silver medalist 2019 team trials Junior Division.
Kerrville, Texas was the first of two Olympic trials of grueling competition to select the U.S. Olympic team for the 2020 Olympics to be held in Tokyo, Japan. Jessi Griffin, a Pickens County High School student, proved her metal against many of the nation’s top competitive shooters in international skeet, taking the silver medal for ladies Junior Olympic shooters.
In a called meeting lasting a matter of minutes the school board approved the millage rate for this year and a fiscal year 2020 budget Friday at the central office.
With board chair Tucker Green participating by speaker phone, the board approved a rolled back millage rate of 15.1 mils, down from last year’s 15.33.
Superintendent Carlton Wilson commented that this marked the fourth year in a row they had rolled back the tax rate and he was excited about it.