City Administration Suggests Higher Tax Rate
The Largo City Commission will consider a proposed 7.3 percent tax increase at its July 17 meeting.
The Largo City Commission plans to set the maximum property tax rate for 2013 at tonight's meeting.
The commission still needs to review the budget and hold two public hearings, so the actual tax rate could be lower by the time the budget is approved in September.
The proposed tax rate is higher than originally anticipated. In a preliminary report released July 1 the city administration proposed a 2.75 percent tax increase. But the 2.75 percent tax increase would mean $900,000 more in budget cuts in 2014. The city manager's office now recommends the 7.3 percent tax increase.
"While many residents would prefer lower taxes, the city consistently receives public input opposing reductions in city services. The proposed rate will provide sufficient revenue to allow the city to continue to provide the quality services that residents and businesses value," according to the city report.
Since 2008, Largo's property values have declined more than 30 percent. During the same time period, the city has has trimmed its budget almost $15 million and cut the equivalent of 90 full-time positions. Another 23 positions could be cut in 2013. Largo has around 854 employees currently.
If the proposed 7.3 percent increase passed, here is how it could affect your taxes:
- A homesteaded property with an assessed value of about $83,025 would pay about $25 more in city taxes.
- A homesteaded property with an assessed value of $221,399 would pay $105 more in city taxes.
- A non-homesteaded property with an assessed value of $690,377 would pay $237 more in city taxes.
The proposed property tax set July 17 will be sent out to property owners next month. The Pinellas County Tax Appraiser sends out Truth in Millage or TRIM notices on August 20 to all property owners in Pinellas County. The actual tax rate could be equal to or less than the tax rate on the TRIM notice.
Proposed Budget Schedule:
- July 17- The City Commission establishes the maximum property tax rate
- August 17- City Commission budget review
- August 20- TRIM notices sent to Pinellas County property owners
- Sept. 4- City Commission First Public Hearing and Tentative Millage Rate and Budget
- Sept. 2- City Commission Second Public Hearing and Final Millage Rate and Budget
- Oct. 1- Fiscal Year 2013 begins