Tomorrow evening, September 27, is the final county budget hearing at 6:00pm in the County Building at 301 North Olive, WPB. You should arrive by 5:30 if you want to be assured of a seat in the main meeting room.
On the table is the 4.79 millage carried over from the last meeting, along with a 4.784 "alternate" proposal that shaves another $700k off the first. If they were able to find only $5M (less than 0.25% of the proposed budget) then the tax rate hike would be unnecessary. Although the commissioners like to talk about "only pennies a day", it is useful to remember that county spending has grown 10x population growth and 3x inflation since 2003. A line needs to be drawn in the sand. Now. This year.
Currently three of the seven commissioners have voted to avoid the rate increase and consider further cuts to the Sheriff's budget. We agree, yet the other 4 have been unwilling to challenge the Sheriff, and can block any action in this area. On the bright side, that is the smallest majority we have seen to date, thanks to the courage of commissioners Abrams, Burdick and Marcus. Maybe we are making progress.
Please attend the meeting tomorrow, fill out a comment card, and speak, or send emails to the commissioners. Nothing has changed that makes the TAB proposal any less appropriate, and it remains:
For some useful background, see
Taxpayer Action Board