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Commission endorses tax increase

By By JOHN DILMORE JR. Publisher
The Escambia County Commission joined numerous other governmental bodies in Brewton, East Brewton and Escambia County Monday when its members adopted a resolution in support of a proposed 10 mill tax increase to support local education.
The Commission adopted the resolution unanimously.
Voters will go to the polls Dec. 9 to decide on two measures -- renewal of an existing three mill school tax, and implementation of a new 10 mill tax. The new tax's supporters say the money it will generate is needed to make up for cuts in education funding from the state.
If the tax is not passed, school officials have said, students in Escambia County face the elimination of extracurricular activities like band and football, the closing of several facilities and other measures that would negatively impact their educational experience.
Commission chairman Larry White said, "It is incumbent upon local people to make sure the local system doesn't suffer."
The Brewton City Council and the East Brewton City Council have also adopted resolutions supporting the tax.
In other action, the commission voted to accept a $50,000 grant to fund a new investigator's position with the sheriff's office which will work on cases involving federal gun crimes.
The commission specified that the position is funded by the current grant for only one year, and will eliminated if funding is not renewed -- or if new funding is not found -- at then end of that time.
The commission also announced that the courthouse will be closed today, Thursday and Friday in observance of the Thanksgiving holiday.