19 December 2012

Fulton County Considers 50-Year Extension of Tax Commissioner's $150K Tip

The primary responsibility of a tax commissioner is to bill and collect property taxes. There are 159 tax commissioners across this great state who perform this constitutional responsibility in each county and among them, the highest paid tax commissioner comes from Georgia's most populous county.

Fulton County Tax Commissioner Arthur Ferdinand, according to an Atlanta Journal-Constitution report, receives a base salary of $134,440. Utilizing state law (O.C.G.A. § 48-5-359.1), Ferdinand also collects an additional $212,624 in fees paid personally to him by the cities of Atlanta, Johns Creek and Sandy Springs. These additional fees paid to Arthur Ferdinand raised the ire of other elected officials including Fulton County Commissioner Robb Pitts, who described it as taxpayers providing Ferdinand a handsome tip on top of his taxpayer-paid salary.

Today, we'll see if Commissioner Pitts' outrage is real or faux.

Pitts and his colleagues on the Fulton County Commission are considering an extension to Tax Commissioner Ferdinand's $154,726 tip from the city of Atlanta.

Fulton County Commissioners, today, will approve or reject a deal that continues Ferdinand's personal profit from fulfilling his constitutional responsibility for fifty years or until Arthur Ferdinand leaves office; whichever comes first.

This deal is emblematic of what's wrong with Fulton County. Elected officials enriching themselves off of taxpayers' dollars, and not seeing anything wrong with it.

Arthur Ferdinand, for his part, said, "You shouldn't expect people to do additional work and not get paid."

The only problem with that statement is that Ferdinand is not doing additional work. He's doing his job. It is his constitutional responsibility to bill and collect property taxes in Fulton County.