Mississippi town raises taxes, blames rising costs of services

Published 12:20 pm Sunday, September 1, 2019

Three outgoing county supervisors are defending a tax increase in their southwest Mississippi county.

The Enterprise-Journal reports that Pike County supervisors Luke Brewer, Gary Honea and Chuck Lambert are telling local residents that the county was hit with unexpected expenses.

Lambert cites a $400,000 increase in health insurance premiums; a $100,000 increase in worker’s compensation costs; and $300,000 to give employees 3% raises.

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Supervisors will hold a hearing on the proposed county budget and tax increase on Tuesday.

Lambert says property tax rates have been rising over the last decade because expenses have risen, while economic growth has been stagnant.

He defends the county supporting both a county economic development district and the Scenic Rivers Development Alliance, saying the first recruits industry, while the second boosts regional tourism in southwest Mississippi.