City’s tax rate to stay at 3.95 percent

Safety Harbor’s millage rate will remain at 3.95 percent for another year and outside auditors for at least the next three years have been chosen after votes Monday night during a meeting of the Safety Harbor City Commission.

MILLAGE RATE AND BUDGET

Most of the discussion on the millage rate and the city’s fiscal 2021 budget of $73 million took place over the summer during a series of workshops and public hearings, so the two required votes were approved with little discussion this month. The city’s millage rate of 3.95 percent – meaning $3.95 in taxes per $1,000 of taxable value on your home – is one of the lowest among all Pinellas County cities. The 2021 budget will include $200,000 in new money to assist with the Commission’s recent commitment to the Ready for 100 clean energy initiative.

OUTSIDE AUDITORS 

Preceding Monday’s regular Commission meeting, the city’s Audit Committee, which consists of the Mayor, Commissioners and two members of the city’s Finance Advisory Committee, met to hear presentations from the four companies who were finalists to become the city’s outside auditor. After the presentations, the Audit Committee members scored the four on their presentations, and those scores were added to previous scores compiled by the Committee.  CliftonLarsonAllen LLP received the highest total score and the Committee voted unanimously to recommend it to Commission. At the regular Commission meeting, Commission voted 5-0 to award a three-year contract, with two one-year options, to the firm.

OTHER ACTION TAKEN

FEMA funding: Commission voted 5-0 to approve the city entering into an agreement with the Federal Emergency Management Agency, or FEMA, to receive grant money to reimburse it for money spent addressing the effects of COVID-19.

Library Advisory Committee appointments: Commission voted 5-0 to reappoint regular members Jude Ryan, Elyse Kelly, Stephanie Long and alternate Marie Ziegler to the committee that advises Commission on library issues.

Third Friday Committee appointments: Commission voted 5-0 to elevate alternate member Jeffrey Snyder to full member and to appoint Carmenetta Lundy as the alternate member to the committee that advises Commission on the monthly Third Friday event.  

Forward Pinellas presentation: Whit Blanton, executive director of Pinellas County’s metropolitan planning organization, made a presentation to Commission. 

MISSED THE MEETING?

Watch a video of it on the city’s website here: https://safetyharbor.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=6&clip_id=2289. Here is the link to watch the Audit Committee meeting: https://safetyharbor.granicus.com/MediaPlayer.php?view_id=6&clip_id=2290 .

NEXT MEETING

7 p.m., Monday, Oct. 5.

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