Good Hope council moves forward with sales tax plans; annual Christmas festivities Dec. 9


Good Hope Mayor Jerry Bartlett, at the City's council meeting on Monday, Nov. 27, 2017 / Nick Griffin

GOOD HOPE – The Good Hope City Council, at its meeting Monday evening, approved resolution no. 012-2017, which will see the Cullman County Sales Tax Office collect increased sales tax revenue generated by the City’s sales tax increase.

Good Hope passed ordinance 009-2017 back in September, raising the city’s sales tax from 8.5 to 9 percent. The additional revenue will go into a special economic development fund for new business development. The increase put the city’s sales tax rate on equal footing with those of surrounding municipalities, including Cullman, Fairview, Dodge City and Hanceville.

Good Hope Mayor Jerry Bartlett said the increase is set to go into effect on Jan. 1 and will net the City approximately $60,000 in additional revenue. Bartlett said the City will retain a minimal percentage of that revenue to pay for the software upgrades needed to collect it.

In other business, the council discussed several roads it feels need to be widened and focused on Calvert Road in particular due to it’s proximity to the school.

After the meeting adjourned, Bartlett and City Clerk Christie Chamblee talked about the upcoming Good Hope Christmas Parade and Christmas in the Park, which will be held Dec. 9.

“Well this year we are going to make our cookie house bigger because we haven’t been able to contain everybody and get kids in fast enough,” Chamblee said. “We’re going to have s’mores that’ll be ready for everybody and we’ll have some professional face painters come in this year as well. The biggest deal is that our cookie house is going to be much bigger, I also think our parade is going to be bigger; we’ve had a lot more people sign up for the parade this year.”

Bartlett is also excited about some of the new features that will be on display at this year’s Christmas celebration as well as some adjustments to their traditional features.

“We used to have two little out-buildings down there for the cookie houses and this year we’re going to have one and we’re going to completely wrap our pavilion with plastic and make a little house and heat it so that we’ll have more room,” Bartlett said. “We’ve got our train back this year that we had last year. We’ll have the hayride back from last year, too. The cookie houses have really gone over well; everybody always wants to do it, even the adults, but we didn’t have any room. Now by putting it up under the pavilion we’re going to be able to get a lot of people in there to decorate their cookies.

“We throw candy out during the parade and there are just tons of people up and down the road when we come through there and the young kids seem to love those parts better because of Santa and the cookies and the train ride,” continued Bartlett. “The younger kids love the parade and they love to come eat, but they love all the other activities like the hayride, too. It’s always been a very successful event and we’ve seen it steadily grow over the years.”

The annual Good Hope Christmas Parade will start at 2 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 9. The parade, which will start at the high school and end at the municipal park, will be followed by Christmas in the Park, where visitors can enjoy the kid zone with train rides, hayrides, bouncy houses, the cookie house and Santa Claus. Free food will be provided by the City of Good Hope.

For more information, call Good Hope City Hall at 256-739-3757.

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