SEMINOLE – The Seminole City Council unanimously approved ordinances establishing the 2014 millage rate and budget following their first readings at the Sept. 11 council meeting.
Second readings and public hearings will be held at the end of the month, said Mayor Leslie Waters.
Ordinance No. 08-2013 sets the millage rate at 2.4793, a 2.7 percent increase over the rolled back rate of 2.4142. The city anticipates collecting $2,421,879 to be used for general operation. The new millage rate would go into effect on Oct. 1 and end Sept. 30, 2014.
Harry Kyne, director of administration, said the city has seen a 45 percent reduction from rollback rates for the past seven years and that the city has either maintained or lowered the tax rate since 1993.
City Manager Frank Edmunds said the first reading of Ordinance No. 09-2013, which adopts the general fund, special events fund, debt service fund and tree/landscape mitigation fund budgets, “is the first step in adopting the 2014 fiscal year budget.”
The general fund operating budget of $14,646,868 is a 3.7 percent decrease from last year’s budget. The proposed special events fund budget is $93,755 with $713,660 designated for the debt service fund and $50,000 for the tree/landscape mitigation budget.
“To summarize, there’s no millage increase, no decrease of city services and no use of city reserves,” Waters said. “I think it’s an excellent budget.”
The council also voted to extend the current fire protection services agreement with the Pinellas County Fire Protection Authority, a special district of Pinellas County government, for another year.
The agreement defines the comprehensive fire protective services that Seminole and the county agree to provide to unincorporated portions of the county within the Seminole Volunteer Fire Control District.
The city currently has a one-year agreement with the PCFPA to extend the original 1999 agreement until Sept. 30. The new agreement would be extended to Sept. 30, 2014.