A judge has ruled that the surveyor in the Monroe County and Bibb County border case is required to testify in next month’s hearing.
The Fayette County judge’s court order says surveyor Terry Scarborough can be found in contempt if he fails to honor the subpoena issued by Secretary of State Brian Kemp. Scarborough apparently ignored a subpoena to testify at an August evidentiary hearing on the boundary lines between the two Middle Georgia counties.
Kemp then filed an emergency petition in the Griffin Judicial Circuit Court, which includes Fayette County. Scarborough resides in Peachtree City.
“This court shall retain jurisdiction over this matter until notified that respondent Scarborough has fully complied with the Secretary’s subpoena powers,” the Sept. 14 court judgment said.
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The August hearing will now conclude Nov. 2 at the state Capitol with testimony from Scarborough and closing arguments from attorneys, according to an order from Kemp.
Kemp has been tasked with making a decision on the border feud that would determine whether millions of dollars in property taxes remain in Bibb or go to Monroe. The border in question involves about 400 parcels where Bass Pro Shops and some homes are located.
Monroe and Bibb County officials have not been able to settle the boundary dispute that began more than a decade ago.
The state established the county line in 1822, but no evidence from any original survey remains.
In 2005, then-Gov. Sonny Perdue appointed Scarborough to identify the boundary. Through surveying, archaeological evidence and maps, Scarborough concluded that Bibb County had encroached into Monroe County, a claim Bibb officials disputed.
Kemp later rejected the surveyor’s boundary, but he said Scarborough would be allowed to present more evidence about his findings at future hearings.
Scarborough has also been a no-show at other hearings, saying in 2009 that he was suffering financially because Bibb would not pay him nearly $200,000 he was owed for his surveying work.