Budget workshop summarizes issues


Budget workshop summarizes issues


Date: June 9, 2010
by: Kurt Schultheis | City Editor


The Town Commission reviewed the preliminary budget with Finance Director Tom Kelley and Town Manager Bruce St. Denis at a budget workshop Tuesday, June 8, at Town Hall.

Although some commissioners noted that they had several questions for town staff, for now, they agreed to accept the preliminary budget for further review and discuss it again at the commission’s 1 p.m. Thursday, June 17 regular workshop.

St. Denis proposes a 13.6% millage increase and recommends the town consider raising the millage rate from 1.5 mills to 1.7042 mills.

Below is a look at what the town manager is recommending:

• Fund the fiscal year 2010-11 general fund town pension contribution of $965,619 with prior year surplus fund balance.

• Fund the shortfall in ad valorem revenues, due to the decline in property values, with an adjustment in the millage rate to the rolled-back rate. Although this is a slight increase in taxes to homesteaded property owners, it is a rate that brings in the same ad valorem revenues as the previous year.

• Fund the two additional police positions with a millage increase of 0.0505.

• Raise the millage by 0.1536 to raise approximately $715,000 to be put into the fund balance reserve to fund any additional expenditures anticipated in fiscal year 2011-12.

The total of the recommendations, including beach district millage rates, results in an operating and debt millage of 1.9298.

A 30% Drop in Values
At the Town Commission’s Tuesday, June 8 budget workshop, Commissioner David Brenner expressed displeasure with a 30% drop in Longboat Key property values in the last three years.
Below is a look at the change in the island’s property values in the last six years.

Fiscal Year         Value                     % Change
2006                  $5,695,624,611      13.6%
2007                  $6,555,048,538      15.1%
2008                  $6,606,809,366       0.8%
2009                  $5,954,878,099      -9.9%
2010                  $5,350,393,405      -10.2%
2011                  $4,832,229,119       -9.7%

Contact Kurt Schultheis at kschultheis@yourobserver.com

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