City begins budget discussion

The City Commissioners have started to give initial direction to staff on where they stand.

The seal of the City of Ormond Beach. Photo by Jarleene Almenas
The seal of the City of Ormond Beach. Photo by Jarleene Almenas
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The city of Ormond Beach has begun to develop the budget for the 2018-2019 fiscal year, and one of the leading questions of the City Commission workshop on Tuesday, March 6, was whether or not to use the current tax rate of 4.2843 mils to develop it. 

Four City Commissioners were on board with that. City Commissioner Rob Littleton was not. Instead, Littleton suggested the city use the rollback rate and the current millage to meet in the middle. 

"To me, it's not worth doing," City Commissioner Dwight Selby said. "It's not even worth looking at." 

He said the current tax rate is justifiable because of the quality of life the city is able to provide. City Commissioner Troy Kent said

he'd love to go back to the rollback rate, but that Littleton would have to lead the charge on it and tell the City Commission and staff what to cut from the budget.

"If you want to go to rollback, I'm with you, but show me the leadership of what you're going to cut," Kent said.

Selby said the bigger issue is the looming homestead exemption that could be implemented in the near future. 

While the City Commissioners and city staff did not address what would be the exact measures taken to amend the budget if the additional homestead exemption was implemented, Finance Director Kelly McGuire said there would be an additional $800,000 budget shortfall in the general fund.

The long-term outlook for the general fund budget for the next few years was estimated with the following assumptions:

  • 4% growth in taxable value, operating tax rate remains unchanged
  • 5% increase in vacancy savings rate
  • 3% increase in wages, 10% increase in healthcare
  • 2% increase in operating expenses

The City Commissioners also all unanimously voted toward the 2018-2018 budget accounting for the annual $1 increase for water, $1 increase for wastewater and a 1.25% adjustment for solid waste rates. 




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