Miami Springs held its second budget hearing on Sept. 23, and leaders have approved the city’s $19.81 million operating budget, which will raise property taxes by 9.74 percent.
The city council voted 4-1 to set the property-tax rate at $7.671 for every $1,000 of taxable value. The current year’s tax rate is $6.99.
“This is a budget to operate the city and a budget that the people pay for,” said Councilman Billy Bain, the lone dissenter, who felt that the budget should have been reduced further. “I won’t make them (the people) pay for a decision up here that doesn’t make any sense.”
Miami Springs currently has $4.4 million in reserves and is required by the city charter to maintain at least $3.5 million in reserves, according to City Manager Ron Gorland.
Three years ago, the city had $8.4 million in reserves.
The operating budget for the city’s general fund was increased from $14.8 million to $15.2 million. During recent budget workshops at city hall, residents were given ample opportunity to voice their opinions. However, no residents opposed a tax increase during the city’s open forum.
The median 2013 assessed value of the 3,790 homes in Miami Springs is $168,457, according to the county property appraiser’s office. Under the proposed rate, the typical homeowner who takes the standard $50,000 homestead exemption would pay $908.68 in taxes to the city.
Residents might see another increase in their county tax-rate portion, as property values in the city have increased by 2.65 percent since 2012, according to the property appraiser’s office.
The new budget and tax rate will go into effect on Oct. 1.