Hillsborough loses $87-million in taxes

06/04/08 Mitch E. Perry
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Hillsborough County Administrator Pat Bean said today that a lower tax base and reductions in sales taxes will cut the County’s revenues for the next fiscal year by $87-million.

Bean spoke to County Commissioners today, a day before they will seriously examine the budget in a workshop. She said the housing crisis lowered property taxes, but the main reduction came from the implementation of Amendment 1, which roughly doubled the amount of each home’s value exempted from property taxes, and provided portability to those with a homestead exemption.

But Bean said the shortfall would be $117-million if the county had not set aside $30-million as a down payment for some additional shortfalls. And she said that her intent has to been to trim lower priority programs and use vacancies in higher priority programs to absorb as many displaced employees as possible. Bean said the new budget has eliminated 408 positions.

The County Commission begins its first workshop on the issue tomorrow, and must vote on the budget by September.

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