Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Infantini: Brevard County Storm Water and Fire Assessments Could Double

Trudie Infantini
Dear Residents and Business Owners:

The Brevard County Commission has workshops scheduled to discuss raising our fire assessments and storm water fees (taxes) for unincorporated Brevard County. Storm water fees were added to your property tax bill in 1990 as an assessment in addition to your property taxes (“below the line” fee). The fire assessment was implemented in 2006, under a cloud of controversy by circumventing the voting public. This is also an assessment, in addition to your property taxes, (“below the line” fee). These assessments do NOT face the taxing limitations placed on property tax (i.e. Commissioners can raise them 10% or 1000% without voter approval.)

Prior to adopting the assessments, management of storm water and fire control was funded out of your property taxes. 

The Storm water workshop at 5:00, in Viera, March 6 will cover doubling of your fees (taxes). The March 13 workshop at 1:00, in Viera, will discuss how much to raise your current fire assessments to keep pace with increased spending by the Fire Department. The Fire Department has purchased numerous ladder trucks and replaced or remodeled fire stations rather than prioritizing spending. It is important to note the proposed school sales tax increase coming up on the November ballot will be A CHOICE you will make as a voter, whereas these assessment increases do not need voter approval to take effect. HOWEVER, YOU have a VOICE that can be heard! 

Some Brevard County Commissioners raised your property tax rates 30% in the last four years.* Due to property value increases, your taxes will likely increase another 3% each year. Can you afford assessment increases in addition to higher: medical costs, homeowner’s insurance, food costs, electric rate increases, and higher property taxes? I believe Brevard County taxpayers pay enough. We need to prioritize spending. Why spend millions on shopping malls, $5,000 a piece for palm trees, helicopters, and another community center?

Please plan to attend the workshops to voice your approval or disapproval. The dates have been changed once already, so I encourage you to call or email my office to re-confirm the date and time. 


Trudie Infantini