September is budget season in Palmetto Bay. The decisions made for this budget will impact the municipal services you receive, how much you pay in taxes and, if the decisions are not controlled, can lead to far-reaching impact on future budget commitments through increased recurring budget commitments (Budget Creep).
As I always do, I have asked the Village Manager to post the proposed budget online once it is complete. Manager Ed Silva has committed to having the proposed draft budget posted online no later than the end of the day, this Friday, August 3rd. I will provide the link in a future e-news as well as posted here in my blog.
I led the charge to reduce taxes for the 2016 -2017 budget year 2.3292 (not an election year) after having barely missed a reduction the year prior (I was voted down, being part of the 2-3 vote minority, a single vote short of reducing taxes for that prior year). Our current budget (FY 2017-18) remained at that reduced millage rate of 2.3292.
I was the sole sponsor of resolution 2018-85 - which set the Maximum Millage rate at our current 2.3292. I felt the need to sponsor my own property tax Maximum Millage resolution as the administration had proposed an increased working property tax rate of 2.4659. I could not support even the discussion of raising our property tax rate. Now we can REDUCE our property tax rate further as the budget process moves forward in adopting the 2018-19 budget, without fear that the village council will raise the property tax rate. Note that my resolution was unanimously approved 5-0.
Property Taxes add up - the Palmetto Bay property tax is a small part of your overall tax bill. All the different taxes add up. Palmetto Bay may have property tax millage rate of 2.3292, but the overall total includes more than just the municipal tax; your property tax bill also includes School Board Millages (Operating & Debt) , Regional Millages (SFWMD, Evr. Proj., Okeechobee Basin & FIND) and County Wide Millages (County, Debt, Fire & Rescue, Fire Dept & Library). The overall property tax millage rate for Palmetto Bay is 18.2930.
Several budget workshops were held in July - but note that the important steps are the actual budget hearings to be held in September. Our budget is adopted as an ordinance, it is passed in a first, then second reading. The actual decisions are made at these hearings.
Here are the applicable hearing dates (follow the links to official Palmetto Bay information):
FIRST BUDGET HEARING - Wednesday, September 12, 2018, 7:00 PM
SECOND BUDGET HEARING - Monday, September 24, 2018, 7:00 PM
I am committed to reviewing every portion of our village budget. The budget process will be the time that we review the services we receive and whether Palmetto Bay remains committed to "Government Lite". This is OUR money, YOUR money, and you need to stay involved.
Total property tax millage (all taxing authorities): Please CLICK HERE to view the complete table of 2017 ADOPTED MILLAGE RATES for all taxing entities that impact your property tax bill. As you can see, a little increase 'here and there' will have a big overall impact on your total property tax bill.
What is additional, not covered above? Water & Sewer as well as Garbage Collection fees - both County Fees as well as Stormwater fees collected by each municipality.
Please begin your own review and contact me via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org or via phone at (305) 302-3713 to discuss.
For more background, please see my post of September 29, 2016: Palmetto Bay Mayor & Council approve the lowest property tax millage rate in Village history - 2.3292 mills. Note that I attempt to reduce our property tax rate each and every year. Why? I keeps our budget from expanding due to years Palmetto Bay receives an increase in revenue (also known as 'budget creep').
I continue to lead for government lite, strong finances, quality facilities and programing, responsible budgets, and preventing budget creep.