Martino: Time for Significant Tax Relief

It’s that time of year again when the Palm Beach Gardens City Council begins determining how to budget for the City’s needs, wants, and desires. In my opinion, this is the most important and compelling component of the voter’s trust bestowed upon the elected Council members.

From my prospective, the City Council’s participation in preparing the 2015-16 budget for the City should be open, transparent, and communicable with the public. The Council should be the influencing, instructing, and guiding instrument in the budget’s preparation and not the Administration. In order to facilitate a more open budget process I would advocate for…

  1. More scheduled budget workshop meetings in the light of the Council chambers with the public in attendance. This should be the norm and not the exception.
  2. Department heads make their budget presentations at these scheduled workshop meetings so the public can hear the concerns of the Council members and the answers to those concerns.
  3. All, full and part-time, positions of City employment and their concurrent salaries be presented and discussed in public including the City Council’s salaries and benefits.

The contemplated and reported operating property-tax rate (millage rate) of 5.8075 presently proposed for the 2015-16 fiscal year is far from tax relief of any significance.  That is a mere, measly, and miserly reduction of only .024 from the current 5.8315 millage rate.  I would strongly encourage the City Council to consider satisfying the need, want, and desire of Gardens taxpayers for significant tax relief.

In conclusion, there is still opportunity to substantially and significantly reduce the 2015-16 millage rate as the budget process unfolds to finality. Council members have expressed a desire to do just that. Will they “walk the talk” as the saying goes? Only time will tell.


One Response to “Martino: Time for Significant Tax Relief”
  1. Mark Marciano says:

    The budget oversight committee meets Thursday July 16, 2015 and will meet again in August (date TBD). The BOC is a citizen committee and is always open to the public. Meeting dates are published online and are held in the Council chamber. The BOC members would welcome other citizen involvement to learn more about the budget process and be involved in the budget process.

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