Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Senator Opposes Island Incorporation

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Senator Opposes Island Incorporation

Article excerpt

Byline: Doug Gross, Times-Union staff writer

ATLANTA -- State Sen. Rene Kemp has joined the opponents of a bill that would make it easier for island communities to incorporate as cities or towns.

The bill, pushed by Senate Republican Leader Eric Johnson, of Savannah, was touted as only affecting Skidaway Island, in Chatham County, when it passed with only one 'no' vote last week.

But after studying the bill, Kemp said it would also clear the way for incorporation on Sea Island, St. Simons Island and possibly other areas in his district.

Kemp, D-Hinesville, said there have been similar efforts to incorporate by residents of St. Simons Island and other coastal communities. He said he's afraid such a move would hurt county revenues and dilute cities' share of sales tax money.

"I battled six years on the exact thing that bill was trying to do,'' Kemp said.

But Kemp, like every senator but Sen. Regina Thomas, D-Savannah, voted for the bill. …

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