Athens Community Fund Suggested for Money from Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

Apr 13, 2018

The former director of the Athens 2-1-1 information line wants Athenians to get creative with their tax windfall from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

Fenwick Broyard once manned the helm at the 2-1-1 information line. Now he’s back in Athens this weekend to unveil details of a new plan for Athens taxpayers to put money from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act into a rainy day fund for the community. He’s launching the campaign this Sunday, April 15th at Hill Chapel Baptist Church.

“The 25 to 45,000, they’re projecting that that tax bracket will receive an average of $300 per individual per taxpayer, and so I was like that’s $300 per person, how many taxpayers do we have in Athens?” according to Broyard. “I looked into that and found the census figures and did the math myself.”

He came up with a fairly conservative estimate.

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“122-thousand people here, I took out all the over 65's, I took out all the under 18's, then I took out another 30-thousand for UGA students, I took out another 10-thousand for unemployment and I was left with 40-thousand people. 40-thousand people each getting $300, if everybody were to say rather than pocketing this, I’m going to put this into a fund; 40-thousand times 300 is one million. And that’s one year. The individual benefit under this tax break lasts seven years and then our taxes will go up.

“Maybe this is a chance to try something new and tackle one of the core issues facing our community, which is systemic poverty. What would a fund like this do in trying to address that problem.”

Everyone in Athens is invited to hear about the plan during the nontraditional service.

Broyard says the 7-year community fund could go back into education, housing and healthcare, the areas losing money from the tax cuts.