Town of Vaiden is considering if getting into debt offset is even worth it financially or will they spend more money than they would be receiving.
Mayor Mel Hawthorne said he’s worried that the money the town will spend to collect debts will be more than the town will actually collect. He said there may be outstanding water bills or old court fines or tickets that the city can collect, but he’s hesitant.
“We have a list of a couple hundred people, but we have to have their social security numbers, and how are we going to get them? And if they don’t work, then they’re not going to get taxes anyway. Then, we have to make sure their addresses are correct, and there’s no way of knowing that.”
Board attorney Lane Greenlee said he shared the same concerns as Hawthorne.
“We don’t want to pass up an opportunity to collect but I’m not sure if it’s worth it,” he said, adding that if the person doesn’t feel they owe the money, then the town will have to hold a hearing.
“You’ll have to bring in a lawyer or a judge to hear it and then have someone representing the town, it could be expensive,” he said.
Hawthorne said he wanted to go through the list to see if any of the aldermen and women knew anyone on the list.
“Should we do that or just jump into it?” Hawthorne said.
“We should go over the list, if it is not worth it, then we leave it alone,” Alderwoman Lesia Hemphill said.
Also, Hawthorne said he’s been in touch with Southern STRAC. He said the group wants to hold military training at the old Vaiden High School. He said the training will be from Jan. 3 through Feb. 13, 2020.
“We’re not going to war or anything, they just want to use our facility for training,” he said.