By Cindy Jackson
September 16, 2021
“It’s a double header for sure,” was a comment spoken by Megan Diehl, Director of the Office of Management and Budget, as she took to the podium during a marathon session of the Board of County Commissioners on September 13, 2021.
At one point, the Commission Chair Thomas Ford called for a 15-minute recess as the IT (information technology) team took to fixing a technical issue.
The Commissioners received a ton of public comments, both in person and remotely. Opinions were expressed on a wide variety of topics including individuals paying homage to the late former Commissioner Steve Kelly, criticism of how the County finances capital projects, complaints about beach driving and taxes. In addition, criticisms of County Attorney Mike Mullin were received with one resident saying [current] “commissioners can either be a part of the cover-up or a part of the clean-up.”
Ms. Diehl was “the last at bat,” so to speak, and went about conducting a most meticulous discussion of the County’s FY21-22 Budget. State law requires the County to hold two public hearings. September 13, 2021 was the first and the final public hearing will be held on September 27, 2021 at 6PM.
The tentative budget distributed on July 26, 2021 totaled $283,891,386. Adjustments resulted in a $18,295,906 increase for a new total of $302,187,292. Diehl outlined where those changes were made.
In addition and as a result of a special meeting held on September 8, 2020, it was officially announced that the proposed countywide millage rate will be 7.3238, down from the earlier approved rate of 7.4278. (The Rolled-Back Rate would have been 7.0810).
The reduction in the millage rate is a result of changes in estimated revenues to be received from the State – providing for an additional $1,124,871. The BOCC voted on 9/8/21 to reduce the Ad Valorem Millage by $1,247,609 or approximately 1.31%.
Also explained were the figures for other millage rates. Those being:
- Municipal Service Taxing District Millage: (2.2770 included in tentative budget)
- Recreation and Water Conservation District Millage: (0.0000 included in tentative budget)
- Amelia Island Beach Renourishment Millage: (0.0960 included in tentative budget)
At the end of Ms. Diehl’s presentation, the BOCC then voted to approve a tentative budget for FY21-22 in the amount of $302,187,292, to adopt the (aforementioned) millage rates and to set the final public hearing on the budget to take place on September 27, 2021 at 6PM.
To view the meeting in its entirety go to the County’s website at https://www.nassauclerk.com/watch-meetings/ and to view a calendar of scheduled meetings relating to County business go to https://www.nassaucountyfl.com.