- Associated Press - Wednesday, May 6, 2015

ATLANTA (AP) - Gov. Nathan Deal has signed a bill granting a special tax break to automaker Mercedes-Benz.

He signed the bill Wednesday without fanfare, ceremony or an announcement.

It originally was drafted to revise the procedures by which counties appraise property and handle appeals of tax assessments. But late in the session, and with only a few legislators in the know, an amendment was added granting a $1.26 million annual tax break for Mercedes-Benz.

The German company isn’t mentioned by name in the bill, but state officials have acknowledged only Mercedes-Benz is eligible for the special tax treatment.

The amendment exempts Mercedes’ workers from paying the required state fees when they get a leased company vehicle.

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