Gov. Nathan Deal and Clayton State University President Tim Hynes exchange words Tuesday after a Clayton County Chamber Day photo op at the State Capitol.
ATLANTA Clayton County could lose $12.6 million in revenue if legislation limiting its taxation powers at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport is approved, a county legislator announced Tuesday.
That was a lesson county business leaders learned during Clayton County Chamber Day at the state capitol. State Rep. Mike Glanton (D-Jonesboro) made the sobering announcement about the proposed legislation during a luncheon.
House Bill 399 would prohibit counties from collecting property taxes from vendors who lease space at airports owned by a different government body. The legislation was introduced by state Rep. David Knight (R-Griffin) and has support from Republican and Democatic legislators from Atlanta, Cumming, Savannah and Gainesville.
The legislation does not explicitly point to Clayton County, but Hartsfield-Jackson is the only place in Georgia where vendors at an airport are being assessed ad valorem taxes, according to Glanton.
“That would be devastating for Clayton County,” said Glanton.
The announcement about House Bill 399 was just one example of the type of information business leaders got from the Clayton County Legislative Delegation during the county’s chamber day.
This was the second year the Clayton County Chamber of Commerce has held a Clayton County Chamber Day at the state capitol. New items this year included presentations from representatives of the Georgia Department of Argiculture and the Georgia Department of Economic Development, who spoke about the State Farmer’s Market in Forest Park and the state’s film industry.
State Sens. Gail Davenport (D-Jonesboro) and Valencia Seay (D-Riverdale) introduced chamber leaders on the floor of the state Senate. Davenport and Seay each presented Senate resolutions to chamber leaders.
“You heard it called Clayton County Day in one resolution and Clayton County Chamber Day in another,” Davenport told her fellow senators. “That’s because we are all united together to make Clayton County a great place to live.”
Clayton County legislators in the House of Representatives also recognized the business leaders from the floor of their chamber.
The event was capped off with members of the Clayton County Legislative Delegation explaning some of the key pieces of legislation they have pending in the General Assembly.
“I think it was wonderful,” said Chamber of Commerce President Yulonda Beauford. “The whole reason we do this every year is to give our chamber members an opportunity to experience what goes on every day at the state capital.”
And, as for House Bill 399, Glanton attended a committe hearing on the bill after Clayton County Chamber Day ended. Afterward, he said the Public Finance subcommittee of the House’s Ways and Means Committee delayed a vote on the bill late Tuesday afternoon “to have it further vetted.”
Glanton said the subcommittee will consider the bill again on Thursday.