City of Jacksonville Fiscal Year 2007-08 Budget
Click the image to view the PowerPoint presentation made during the Mayor's budget address to City Council.
The city's FY 2007-08 budget provides for city services, including public safety and infrastructure, while investing in the quality of life that makes Jacksonville such a great place to live. It also responds to the requirements of a new financial scenario largely created by property tax changes mandated by the Florida Legislature.
In order to meet the challenges of the new environment, the budget contains significant spending reductions and the implementation of three modest fees to help pay for services and provide an alternative revenue source for the city moving forward. Another multi-million dollar cost-saving component is a reorganization of the city government to eliminate redundancies and enhance operational efficiency.
When Tallahassee directed local governments statewide to reduce their property tax rates for 2007/08, the City of Jacksonville immediately lost millions of dollars in anticipated operating revenue. The crisis didn't stop there. Jacksonville also faced the inevitable and increasing expenses of operating local government.
The mayor proposed a fee structure to help provide necessary services to the taxpayers and diversify the city's revenue stream. City Council has approved two fees with some modifications and is considering another. Here are the details.
Solid Waste Collection Fee
Jacksonville spends more than $42 million annually to collect garbage; that's about $11 per household each month. The $3 monthly fee approved by the council is scheduled to go into effect in April. Residents will pay the fee annually through a bill mailed to their homes. Failure to pay this fee will result in a lien on the resident's home that, if not paid, will accrue interest and must be paid before the transfer of title, if the home is sold. These liens will not lead to foreclosure.
The costs for improving Jacksonville's drainage system and satisfying federal and state requirements for treating stormwater runoff have increased dramatically. This fee will pay for stormwater system needs, including stormwater treatment and drainage projects. The stormwater fee will average about $5 per month for the average house (approximately 2,500 square feet) and is based on the square footage of your house and the amount of paved or impervious surface. The stormwater fee varies, and the assessment begins in July.
Right now, a Stormwater Advisory Committee consisting of 40 Jacksonville residents is determining a credit schedule to reduce the impact of this fee on nonprofits and industrial sites that have installed on-site water retention measures. This committee will also recommend to the City Council specific policies and procedures that should be evaluated prior to the initial bills being sent to each property owner.
Here's a breakdown of residential fees:
Small House: $2.50 per month on average
Average House: $5 per month on average
Large House: $7.50 per month on average
Townhomes, duplex, triplex, quadplex, apartments with more than nine units, and condominiums: $2.59 per dwelling unit, per month
Mobile homes: $4 per dwelling unit, per month
Multifamily with five to nine units: $1.70 per dwelling unit, per month
All other developments: Total impervious area divided by 3,100 square feet multiplied by $5 per month
Residents will pay the stormwater fee annually in a separate bill mailed to their homes. Failure to pay this fee will result in a lien on the resident's home that, if not paid, will accrue interest and must be paid before the transfer of title if the home is sold. These liens will not lead to foreclosure.
Stormwater fee calculator
Utility Franchise Fee
A franchise fee is a charge from a city to a utility for various rights and benefits the utility receives. When the utility passes along this cost to residents, the cost is spread out among those receiving utilities, according to their rate of usage.
Locally, a franchise fee is under consideration but has not been approved because it involves a change to the JEA charter and cannot go before City Council until November. If it is approved, the franchise fee would appear on residents' JEA bills and would be assessed at 3 percent of the total utility bill.