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Vero Beach raises millage tax rate 13%

Leaders say extra funds to be used for adding police force, projects
Posted at 10:38 PM, Sep 26, 2023
and last updated 2023-09-27 02:36:47-04

VERO BEACH, Fla. — The Vero Beach City Council increased taxes for the 2023-24 fiscal year on Tuesday night.

Council members say the tax dollars will pay for a number of areas, including additional police, infrastructure projects and administration. Also, the budget provides for a 5% salary increase for all 334 city employees.

The new millage rate is 2.7680, which is a 13% increase from last year. This rate generates ad valorem tax revenue that is $1.566 million higher than last year's tax levy.

The new rate would equate to just over $1,100 for a house assessed at $400,000.

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Property owners also have to contend with increased valuations. But for those with the Save Our Homes state law, the assessed valuation of a home can only increase by 3% yearly.

Vero Beach's overall budget is $33 million, up 5.1% from the current year's budget of $30.9 million.

Small business owner Jeff Palleschi before the meeting said the rate hike comes as many people deal with increased costs and inflation.

"As a general rule, I'm not really in favor of raising taxes," the owner of 21st Amendment Distillery told WPTV reporter Cassandra Garcia.

But he noted he's OK with the change if the money is used for needed improvements.

"It's still a little high but if you're gonna use it for something we have to," resident Ray McLendon said.

The changes begin Oct. 1.