CLEARWATER – Taxable values are up by an estimated 5.63 percent in 2014 - good news for local governments and agencies currently working on their budgets for the coming fiscal year.
Pinellas County Property Appraiser Pam Dubov released the 2014 estimates of change in taxable values May 29.
“There are some good signs of an improving market, including an estimated increase in the just market value of real property of over 10 percent,” Dubov said.
The value of new construction is up to $298 million – approximately 40 percent over 2013.
She pointed out that preliminary estimates lack some the larger tangible personal property accounts, which could add or subtract from the totals.
Tangible personal property includes items such as business equipment and machinery, said Amanda Coffey with the Property Appraiser’s Office. She said it is typical for larger companies to apply for an extension, giving them until Mid-May to file their paperwork. Dubov’s staff is still working to complete those estimates.
“We don’t anticipate a huge percentage change,” Coffey said.
Millage rates for the different taxing authorities, with the exception of emergency medical services, transportation and Pinellas Park Water Management District, are applied to the value of tangible property and added to the tax bill. The money collected goes to the taxing authority in which the property is located.
Taxes on real property bring in the most money to government coffers. Property owners with increased values will likely have larger tax bills next year even if millage rates stay the same. Some areas of the county will see bigger increases in tax bills than others due to the variety in changes of taxable values.
This is the second year values have increased after four years of losses. The estimates for 2014 are nearly double last year’s gain of about 3 percent.
Dubov will certify the tax rolls on July 1 and report final values to the taxing authorities. Dubov will mail truth in millage notices with tentative millage rates and potential tax bills to property owners Aug. 22.
The county’s general fund will profit from the 5.63 percent increase in total taxable values compared to 2013. The dollar value of almost $3.2 billion includes a 6.1 percent gain in real property tax values plus new construction and tangible personal property.
The dollar value for Emergency Medical Services is about $3.2 billion, about $724 million for the municipal taxing district (unincorporated county), $3.9 billion for the school district, nearly $2.9 billion for Pinellas Suncoast Transit Authority and about $418 million for the Pinellas Library Cooperative.
Annual property tax bills are calculated using the millage rate from the different taxing authorities and applying it to the property value minus homestead and other exemptions.
County staff is currently working to balance its revenue against requests for more money coming from its departments, independent agencies and Constitutional Officers. The Sheriff’s Office alone has requested an additional $15 million. A breakdown in negotiations with local fire departments will likely lead to less than anticipated budget savings for emergency medical services. Business Technology Services has requested $725,000 in additional funding.
After four years of budget cuts, the increase in property values also could help restore money to departments with the most need, such as code enforcement and environmental management.
The town of Redington Beach leads the county with an 8.80 percent increase in real property values. Add in the preliminary estimate for tangible property, which is down slightly, the town’s total taxable value is up by about 8.19 percent compared to 2013. In real dollars, that translates to about $27.2 million more in taxable value than last year.
Several other beach towns are among municipalities with the biggest jump in taxable values. The estimated increases are as follows. Dollar values are rounded. Total taxable value includes tangible property and new construction.
• Redington Beach – 8.89 percent real property values, 8.19 percent total taxable value, or $27.2 million
• Indian Rocks Beach – 7.75 percent real property, 7.65 percent total taxable, or $59.5 million
• Redington Shores – 7.76 percent real property, 7.51 percent total taxable, or $37 million
• St. Petersburg – 7.56 percent real property, 6.98 percent total taxable, or $876 million
• Indian Shores – 7.46 percent real property, 7.31 percent total taxable, or $47.3 million
• Belleair Shore – 7.42 percent real property, 7.41 percent, or $7.6 million
• North Redington Beach – 7.40 percent and 7.41 percent, or $28.4 million
• Belleair Beach – 7.13 percent and 7.10 percent total taxable, or $28.2 million
• Treasure Island – 6.68 percent and 6.55 percent total taxable, or $85.2 million
• Oldsmar – 6.53 percent real property, 6.13 percent total taxable, or $64 million
• Dunedin – 6.29 percent real property, 6.05 percent total taxable, or $106.3 million
• South Pasadena – 6.25 percent real property, 5.34 percent total taxable, or $23.2 million
• Gulfport – 6.20 percent real property, 5.98 percent total taxable, or $39.2 million
• St. Pete Beach – 5.98 percent real property, 5.74 percent total taxable, or $118.5 million
• Madeira Beach – 5.8 percent real property, 5.72 percent total taxable, or $49.2 million
• Safety Harbor – 5.76 percent real property, 5.04 percent total taxable, or $48.7 million
• Tarpon Springs – 5.7 percent real property, 5.57 percent total taxable, or $73.4 million
• Clearwater – 5.63 percent real property, 5.27 percent total taxable, or $407.5 million
• Belleair Bluffs – 5.45 percent real property, 5.20 percent total taxable, or $8.5 million
• Kenneth City – 5.24 percent real property, 4.51 percent total taxable, or $5.2 million
• Seminole – 5.11 percent real property, 4.75 percent total taxable, or $46.4 million
• Largo – 4.73 percent real property, 3.41 percent total taxable, or $131.2 million
• Belleair – 4.42 percent real property, 4.35 percent total taxable, or $25.4 million
• Pinellas Park – 3.97 percent real property, 3.97 percent total taxable, or $103.1 million