HB spending plan tops $15M, up for approval

Holmes Beach’s proposed 2018-19 budget — including a tax increase — is ready for public consumption.

The millage rate is proposed at 2.25 mills.

The millage is a percentage that determines how much a property owner pays in taxes based on their property’s appraised value. The rate will be the same as last year, but it adds up to a tax increase for property owners.

Treasurer Lori Hill has said 2.25 mills is a 6.83 percent increase over the rollback rate of 2.1062 — the rate that would generate the same amount of property tax revenue for the city as the 2017-18 fiscal year.

Property tax revenue is expected to top $4 million, a 7.8 percent increase from the current year.

The city commission is considering a $15,450,809 spending plan that would begin Oct. 1 if approved.

The proposed budget includes just over $2 million more than the current budget.

The additional spending is for three new staffers, a license plate recognition system for the police department, improvements at city field and insurance policies for employees’ health benefits and policies maintained by the Florida League of cities.

The budget, in the form of an ordinance, will have two public hearings and votes before it is final and the new fiscal year begins.

The public hearings for the budget ordinance are set for 6 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 13, and 6 p.m. Tuesday, Sept. 25.