Fruitland Park holds millage rate steady while adopting $11.78 million budget

The Fruitland Park Commission made it official Thursday night by adopting a new millage rate and an $11.78 million budget for the coming year.

Commissioners had given their tentative backing to a millage rate of 3.9134 per $1,000 assessed valuation and the new budget during first readings of ordinances on Sept. 5. They followed that up Thursday night with the second and final readings.

Public hearings were held on both topics but no one in attendance chose to speak. That was a marked difference from the two contentious budget meetings a year ago that drew such a large crowd of Villagers and area residents that the gatherings had to be held at the Comunity Methodist Church, just down the street from City Hall.

The 3.9134 millage rate is the same amount that was adopted by commissioners last year and is 3.08 percent over the rollback rate of 3.7965. The rollback rate is the amount needed to collect the same ad valorem tax revenue as the prior year.

The proposed millage rate will result in ad valorem revenue of a little more than $2.78 million – an increase of about $254,733 from the past year. The city’s gross taxable value has been certified at more than $748.6 million, which is a 10 percent increase over the current year.

The proposed budget contains a general fund of $8.16 million that will be used to operate the city. It includes a 3 percent cost of living raise for employees and monies to cover increases in their medical premiums, workers compensation and matching funds for the Florida Retirement System.

Other money in the budget includes:

  • Redevelopment Fund: $456,632;
  • Capital Projects Fund: $899,540;
  • Utility Fund: $2.14 million;
  • Fire Pension Fund: $46,812; and
  • Recreation Fund: $74,236.