Beach budget and continuation meeting

Tonight at 7:00 p.m. the City of St Augustine Beach with hold a final hearing on the proposed budget for the 2013 fiscal year followed by a continuation of the September regular monthly meeting, according to an announcement received by Historic City News today.

If approved as submitted, the millage rate of 2.3992, the same rate applied to property by the city last year, will remain. Some beach residents may even see a lower tax bill — even though the millage remained the same, some properties have continued to decline in appraised value.

City Commissioner Undine C. Pawlowski, defends the proposed budget; pointing out that the millage rate at the City of St Augustine Beach is considerably lower than other municipalities of comparable size — in Ponce Inlet the rate is over 6, and in Bunnell, it is over 7.

At the last meeting, Vice Mayor Rich O’Brien advocated another $100,000 to be cut from the Police Department budget. There is an agenda item to select an Advisory Board for the Reduction of the Police Department.

Another issue potentially impacting the final approved budget; appropriation of impact fees that were originally set aside for the installation of a pedestrian crossing light at the intersection of Pope Road and Beach Boulevard. Commissioner Pawlowski told reporters that such capital improvements, which were already decided, should not be unfunded unless there is a public hearing to give the people a chance to speak up.

O’Brien also supported a one-dollar per hour across-the-board raise for all city employees.

See the entire draft budget on their website, at: www.staugbch.com

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