Commission approves tax levy
The Marengo County Commission gathered on Dec. 31 to authorize levying the tax that was approved by county voters in a special election on Dec. 10, effective Jan. 1. The special election put a 4 mil ad valorem tax up to vote in order to support Whitfield Regional Hospital.
Close to 4,500 residents went to the polls, with just over 60 percent voting in favor and approximately 30 percent voting against. The results, published by the “Demopolis Times” on Dec. 10 after the polls closed, do not include provisional ballots.
During a town hall on Nov. 19, WRH CEO Doug Brewer said the funds would go towards building a 10- to 15-year capital plan. Hospital officials also hope to add building improvements and fill other healthcare needs in the area, such as additional health clinics and adding an obstetrician and childbirth to the hospital’s services.
Brewer also noted that the hospital employs over 300 people and pays $15 million in annual payroll, as well as makes over $2.5 million in local purchases annually.
Funds from the tax can only be used for the hospital. Should WRH close, the tax will no longer be collected.