Pinecrest Gardens would get money toward a new restaurant, two parks would get new turf for athletic fields, and the village would get an electric car charging station, if council members approve a 2013-14 budget proposed by Village Manager Yocelyn Galiano Gomez.
Last month, Galiano Gomez received council approval to advertise a tax rate of $2.20 per $1,000 in property value for the 2013-14 fiscal year, the same rate as this year.
While the village’s spending is expected to increase with an operating budget of $19.6 million compared to this year’s $18.6 million, revenues are also increasing. Galiano Gomez projects revenue of $19.7 million, up 8 percent from this year.
The new initiatives also include a state lobbyist, an annexation study, improvements to Coral Pine Park, and a roadway resurfacing project. But the bulk of the budget’s changes are due to capital projects including, the possible restaurant in Pinecrest Gardens, improvements to the Banyan Bowl, a water-line extension project, and new turf for fields at Evelyn Greer and Flagler Grove Parks.
The property tax will generate $7.8 million next year, making it the largest source of revenue for the village’s general fund, Galiano Gomez said. Other taxes such as utility and communications services are expected to generate $2.8 million.
If adopted by the Village Council, the red-light camera pilot program also will increase revenue, but it will be offset by the cost of installation and the renting of cameras.
The budget proposes to borrow $800,000 for renovations to Cypress Hall, the proposed restaurant site in Pinecrest Gardens. The money would be repaid over 10 years.
Council members have yet to finalize a contract with the restaurant group.
The budgeted amount of each project will be used to begin the project in the upcoming fiscal year — such as the village’s $1 million plan to resurface streets that are currently be determined via a study — or it will be set aside for future use, as in the case of the water-line extension project.
The project would extend potable water to about 1,000 single family homes that do not have access to public water. The total cost of the project is estimated at $11.5 million.
The Pinecrest Police Department will see the largest dollar increase in spending, up $404,730 to $7.8 million. The department wants to hire an additional dispatcher, reclassify the current commander as a major, and increase the salaries of sergeants and officers by 2 percent – a result of a prior contract with the police union.
Other employees will get a 3 percent raise.
Pinecrest Gardens would hire two more full-time groundskeepers and a part-time education coordinator to focus on environmental education, which Galiano Gomez said has always been an objective of the village.
“We have to progress, because cities that don’t progress lose business and people start to leave,” Galiano Gomez said. “We need to reinvest in the community constantly.”
She will hold a town hall meeting for residents to ask questions about the budget at 7 p.m. on Aug. 13, followed by a budget workshop for the council at 6 p.m. on Aug. 20, both at the Pinecrest Municipal Center, 12645 Pinecrest Pkwy.
The council will hold two public hearings on the budget, on Sept. 11 and Sept. 16. Both will be at 7 p.m. at the Municipal Center.
The budget is available for review at www.pinecrest-fl.gov.