TOWN COUNCIL MEETING SEPTEMBER 13, 2023
This was the special council meeting to approve the millage and budget for the 2024 tax year commencing October 1st.
The town, even with the decrease in the millage of a tenth of a mill to .9 mills, would still collect slightly more ad valorem than last year. The amount will go from $64,000 to $72,000. The anticipated total income for Ocean Breeze will be $220,000.
The expenses are anticipated to be $264,000. The difference will come from the fund balance. At the end of the fiscal year, there will still be almost an entire year of expenses in the reserves.
A public speaker from Seawalk wanted the millage to decrease to .8 mills. The council by 4-2 voted to do just that. Then the council decided not to continue with the police patrols which cost $18,000 per year. That was a 5-1 vote.
There was also a move to cut a portion or all the increase from the deputy clerk of $11,000. It was unclear from the explanation why she was receiving the raise. The mayor, who is the chief operating officer, could not coherently tell the council why it was necessary. There was also some question as to the increased computer expense that no one could adequately explain either.
The town consultant suggested they pass the millage and budget as printed with the millage dropping to .8 mills and the end of the sheriff’s patrol. In two weeks at the final hearing there can be further discussion.
It seems that the Seawalk development is heading down the path of ending incorporation. It would not be an unreasonable position. They should wait till the developers of the resort and Seawalk have finished their work. Then it may not be time for a frank discussion of why the municipality should continue.
You can see the entire budget here