Newton County Board of Tax Assessors: Group will review roads

COVINGTON - The Newton County Board of Tax Assessors will take over review of street and subdivision names and assigning of street numbers for the city of Covington.

By law, the county and cities each have the authority to designate street names and numbers.

The Covington City Council recently approved a resolution transferring its authority to the Board of Tax Assessors in hopes of making things easier for public safety personnel responding to emergencies.

The county and city have different systems for numbering streets, and a problem can happen when a city street reaches the border of the unincorporated county and a large break in the sequences of address numbers occurs, according to James Griffin with the County Attorney's Office.

This can be confusing for public safety responders, as can duplicate subdivision and street names, Griffin said.

So the city of Covington recently passed a resolution delegating its authority to name and number streets to the Newton County Board of Tax Assessors.

Newton County has passed its own resolution accepting the responsibility, with the stipulation that the city may re-establish its authority at any time.

With each local planning department keeping only a list of street names and numbers within its jurisdiction, duplications can happen, said Chief Appraiser Tommy Knight.

Two homes on Campbell Road were recently discovered to have the same address, Knight said. The problem was discovered when a Christmas package was delivered to the wrong house. One of the residents, who uses the home near Jackson Lake mainly for short getaways, agreed to a change of address to correct the problem.

"Since the Tax Assessors keeps all street names and numbers, regardless of jurisdiction, it just made sense to have them be the checkpoint for duplications throughout the entire county. With great cooperation from everyone, we were able to come up with a resolution that should minimize future duplications and errors," Knight said.

The Tax Assessors already handles reviews of street names and numbers for the county's other municipalities, Knight said.

Crystal Tatum can be reached at crystal.tatum@newtoncitizen.com.