No: We don’t have the tax base

Published 12:00 am Monday, September 16, 2002

If Sondra Dildy has her way, there would be no way Selmont would become its own city.

Dildy, a school bus driver, has lived in the area for more than 30 years and has seen several previous attempts at incorporation fail. But, the last one happened more than 15 years ago, and Selmont was lucky enough to have a large enough business base to keep the incorporation away.

Now, they don’t have the business. And Dildy claims Selmont residents don’t know what they would be getting themselves into if they decide to incorporate.

Currently, Selmont is in a unique position. Situated beyond the Selma city limits, it is not subject to the taxes that come with being in the city limits.

However, because Selmont lies in the police jurisdiction of Selma, the residents do get fire and police services. The loss of those, Dildy says, will cripple the community. With the drug problems that already exist, she added, that is the last thing that needs to happen.

The residents will also face higher property taxes and lower values on their homes, she predicts.

And if some of the people want to protest incorporation, they are too afraid to do so. The meetings have occured at Tipton Middle School, a place that Dildy says is beset with drug problems. It is also the place where Selmont residents normally go to vote.

She said that the area needs to be cleaned up before Selmont can be incorporated. That includes getting rid of the drug and crime problems in the area. Dildy’s children, two of whom had moved to Florida in search of jobs, are afraid to even go out in the daytime anymore. The same goes for her neighbors.

She also said that residents where she lives do not appreciate the lack of coverage about the possibility of incorporation. Dildy said she only found out about it until reading a previous Times-Journal article. She found out about the first incorporation meeting just two nights before it took place &045;&045; through a phone call from another long-time resident.