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Poll: Do You Support a Property Tax Increase?

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Jacksonville political circles are buzzing today about a new plan to balance the city's budget that involves raising the property tax rate.

Mayor John Peyton will reveal the details of his proposal on Thursday, but the Florida Times-Union is reporting that the mayor will call for a 14% hike in the property tax rate. That would mean an increase from 8.4 mills to 9.6 mills.

The city faces a tight financial situation due to the recent economic downturn and sharp decrease in home prices, which translates directly into a decrease in property tax revenue. Supporters of the plan suggest that the only alternative would be further cutting away at vital city government services like police and fire protection.

The mayor's office won't comment on the specifics of their proposal until the official announcement on Thursday. But we want to know what you think...

31 Responses »

  1. This isn't just hitting our community and state. But each and every home there is. I can't afford the tax hike any more then the next person. How about I pay the property tax hike and and the city pay my hospital and dr bills.

  2. Whenever we have these budget problems, why is the first thing on the chopping block police and fire services and schools? So we'll roll over and aquiesce?
    Between city service rate increases, JEA increases, the coming cap and trade, sugar/fat taxes... how am I supposed to fit this into MY budget? Why do I have to be the only one to give up things? And when things get better, can we honestly expect the city to lower the rates? Puh-lease!
    How about we start by looking at some of the non-essential services? Because I think it's an absolute disgrace to think that my house might burn down, but at least downtown the fountains are running and the statues are free of seagull poo.

  3. I thought Republicans were for LOWER TAXES????

    • "Real" Republicans ARE for lower taxes, smaller honest efficient government, and fiscal responsibility. Delaney was just a front man for the Ortega "Non-group" and their contractors and bankers. Peyton is just the son of a self made rich man that took a page from the play book of Joe Kennedy. (If the powers that be won't let you into their club, then when you get rich, you buy their clubs and buy your son elected office.) Ain't Machiavellian realpolitk somethin?

  4. Well, let's see, we ask for a tax cut back in 2006(?), only to find out that the savings weren't what we were promised, and then everybody started raising other taxes and fees, I'm not shocked that taxes are headed upward. Did anybody really think that the cuts would be made, and absolutely no attempt be made to make up for them?

    I'm in Clay, not Duval county, so I'm not involved anyways. I predict that left up to the voters, it will be voted down, regardless of how badly it may be needed.

  5. Want to tell the mayor how you feel? Let's all don't shop at Gate gas stations any more. Let him feel it in the pocketbook.

    Buy your gas and snacks from someplace else. See how long this higher taxes nonsense goes on for I'll say it won't.

    • As a person who drives to and from Daytona for my job everyday. I have already stopped using Gate. Have you notice that their gas burns faster than other gas stations. I have. I once was able to get 360 miles to a tank of gas driving at 63 mph on the interstate. Now if I purchase Gate gas I only get 280-300 mph driving at the same speed.

      WE DO NOT NEED ANY PROPERTY TAX INCREASES WE NEED ADMINISTRATION TO TAKE A PAY CUT LIKE MANY AVERAGE CITZENS ALREADY ARE DOING!

  6. Perhaps its time to get tough.
    Go ahead and cut the police, but give us a law like in Texas where we can shoot the fleeing felons. (Wouldn't need so many police, could cut the County Jail, and forget the new courthouse.)
    Go ahead and cut "education", but shut the swiming pools, close the ball chasing fields, and fire the jargon speaking "professional" edumacators with their never ending series of worthless programs and paperwork. (Perhaps those left could return to actually educating someone.)
    Etc, etc.... By the way, I live in Old Arlington where we just got our faux brick decorated boulevard with palm trees planted in the road. Looks great. Probably cost a small fortune and believe someone drove into one of them yesterday. Our givermint still at work!

  7. I can accept some property tax "enhancement" but - only in proportion to:
    1. The reduction in the Fees
    2. Replace the loss of sales tax revenue as compared to last year
    3. Replace the loss of gas tax revenue as compared to last year
    4. Same considerations for ad- valorem revenue + or - .
    5. Adjusting for indebtedness that may have been assumed already to replace
    anticipated loss in revenues.
    6. Allowance for CPI + increases.
    7. Spending cuts we must recommend

  8. I can accept some property tax "enhancement" but - only in proportion to:
    1. The reduction in the Fees
    2. The loss of sales tax revenue as compared to last year
    3. The loss of gas tax revenue as compared to last year
    4. Same considerations for ad- valorem revenue + or - .
    5. Adjusting for indebtedness that may have been assumed already to replace anticipated loss in revenues.
    6. Allowance for CPI + increases.
    7. Spending cuts we must recommend

  9. Instead of raising taxes why not increase the tax base by selling off land and buildings that are draining the city coffers? The City has numerous non-performing assets they could sell off that would give us an influx of cash and at the same time increase the tax base, We've started on the new Ct House, why not go ahead a start the bidding on the riverfront site of the current Ct House?

    Eliminate the JEDC, they've only been in existence since the Delaney Administration and they don't really add anything to our ability to bring in businesses anymore (that's what the COC and Cornerstone do).

    What do we spend on Special Events every year? I like fireworks as much as the next guy, but there are boatloads of private sector promoters that could do this.

    Sell the School Board site already, there are plenty of empty buildings in the burbs where they could be located.

    Start enforcing the property codes and fining the violators.

    Cut City Council pay to what a part time job shoud really pay.

    Get serious about reducing costs and maximizing existing revenue sources before you start talking about taxing John Q Public.

    • How about this:
      Get serious about renegotiating the fire and police union contracts. INSIST that the retirement programs be changed from "defined benefit" to "defined contribution".

      How many private sector workers nowadays have defined benefit retirement programs?

      Start off by mandating an across the board 10% budget cut in all city departments. If that doesn't balance the budget, then start cutting more in non-essential departments (libraries, parks, special events, etc).

  10. I heard a radio reporter today ask whether Jacksonville could do with fewer parks. Now, if it is true Jacksonville has the most parks of any city in the country (isn't that right?), what is the city going to do, zap them to make them disappear? Close a few! Sell others to private developers and raise cash that way! From all I have heard, we can spare to lose some.

    On top of that, the wailing from public officials IS always the same. "Do you want fewer police, closed schools, delayed fire and rescue response?" How about ending Jax Journey, and closing or reducing hours of non-essential services, even for a temporary period?

    Come on, the taxpayers, if they don't revolt or at least resist, will always be the whipping boy.

  11. Lets vote all these tax mongers out of office. They don't even consider people here that are on fixed incomes and have to do without things just to get by.

  12. How much of the budget is for non-essential services? And why do the tax-and-spenders always act as though only essential services will be cut? Because they are liars and thieves who depend on other people's money to fund their social agendas. Our mayor is not a fiscal conservative. We are ruled by scoundrels. Anyone for recall petition?

  13. Let's see, how many state government jobs are there? Probably about 30,000. How many of these jobs are actually necessary to run this state? How many are overpaid jobs for part time work? How much is being paid out for totally unnecessary things (I'd like to read a study on this). How many jobs are available in Florida government daily? About 3,000. Why do you have to threaten us with eliminating the vital things, like police and firemen when there are so many other places we can cut expenses. So many are unemployed, so many have lost homes, vehicles and even had to give up raising animals (like horses) simply because they can't afford to feed themselves much less the animals. Is the state government the same as the federal, meaning how many don't have to pay into social security? How many get their same pay for the rest of their lives when they leave office? I love America, but I'm so upset with our government on so many levels.
    And by the way, isn't there anyone holding a position in our government that has enough sense to realize THE FAIR TAX would solve so many financial problems. Good Lord, somebody needs to wake up and read about it!

    • Actually there are around 1,000,000 state jobs in Florida and around 7,000 in the city. I am not certain why you are opining about state jobs when Peyton runs the city and is talking about a local, rather than state, property tax increase. I am not aware of anyone retiring at full pay.

      I find it interesting that you are another Fair Tax supporter.

  14. FAIR TAX! FAIR TAX! FAIR TAX!
    Has no one in government office heard of it?

  15. One thing no one ever looks at is energy consumption. Have you never noticed that today the standard is to have everything lit up like daylight. Parking lots, highways, etc. Even the schools have to have their athletic fields lit so theyy can play at night. I'd bet a few million could be saved there. And they talk about conservation-NOT

    How about a citizens committee with full access to make recommendations?

  16. I have been a DCPS employee for five years now and I see the same thing in City Council as I see in the School Board. There is never enough money for people's jobs, but there is always enough money for non-essentials like each principal having a Blackberry paid on your dime. They spend money on things that will make them look good and not promote education or help the poor. My property taxes are upwards of $2500 a year and I cannot afford to escrow them in with my mortgage due to the fact that my husband went from making $30K/year to $14K. So, in my household things like milk and fresh fruit have become a luxury. I know that I am not the only one in this boat, but that's just my point. Everyone is feeling the crunch and instead of our local gov. being responsible with their budgets we are faced with the option to put people out of work. The answer is always higher everything, but I get a $300 a year pay increase. When I put in 30 years to educate our nation's future I will finally be middle class. Let me get off of my soap box and say that I just can't afford all the fees. Does everyone else have the new runoff water and waste fee of over $100 a year due next week? Only homeowners. Gee... I could pay that or I could pay my car payment on time. What are your priorities? If they raise the taxes and we can't afford them, they will just auction off our homes and we will be forced to rent and then they won't get nearly as much tax money. My parents have to pay $1500 a year currently on a piece of land that is not only undevelopable, but also has absolutely no access, (it was $150/ year before it was appraised last fall). I think you have to take a certifiable idiot test before you can be in Civil Service administration. And to the poster who was talking about retirement benefits, there won't be any for me I'm sure. When I started working the vestment period was 5 years, two years ago they moved it to 6 years and last year they moved it to 7 years, so there is probably no chance of getting a state retirement in my future. Have a great summer everybody, I hope you have enough money to send your kids to private schools, because there probably won't be enough teachers in the Fall.

  17. WTH?!? Where is that big favor of a $50000 homestead exemption it wont mine jack with this b/s. You really should travel around and see what kind of disaray your community is in Mayor Peyton. People are struggling.. being laid off of jobs they have had forever...getting no raises. i mean you name it and it is happening! jea is raising there rate... now property taxes! you need to rethink this..

  18. Having to dish out more money???? NO Thanks!! We as homeowners are alredy struggling. Does he want to see more foreclosed homes in Jacksonville???I am quite sure you can cut some ot that useless spending....A courthouse that is now doubled the original cost!!! No property tax hike!!!!

  19. How about a USAGE Fee instead? Collect the Rescue Fee from the Insurance Co or from the person using it. If they don't pay add it to their JEA bill. Maybe it will stop petty 911 calls for stomach aches!

    Charge a fee for Library cards. Those that check out books can pay $5.00 for a yearly card.

    Really how about lowering operating cost for the Government for a change!!

    If MY councel person votes for this they will LOSE my vote!!

  20. A tax hike is needed. Jacksonville has a low millage rate that has been cut by politicians just out to position themselves for future office and not keeping the city's best interest at heart. And whether you like him or not, Peyton has to carry the burden of Delaney's poor management of pensions.

    This city has been run into the ground by politicians more concerned with playing musical chairs than running government. 2010 and 2011 elections are coming. The only thing these political hacks will try to change in this town is their seat of power.

    Stop being cheap. Up the millage and quit crying. Maybe we can use the increase to help fund educational initiatives so our citizens can do more than work a register at Gate.

    Is it a popular move??? No. But making only popular moves is why we are in this situation to begin with.

  21. Brilliant idea! With Forbes predicting Jacksonville to become the foreclosure capital OF THE NATION, Pay-Ton is talking about a property tax increase. I wonder what that will do to foreclosures and delinquencies in payments.

    How about getting rid of the following before letting go of police, firefighters, libraries or parks:

    Jacksonville Economic Development Commission (JEDC)
    Jacksonville Journey
    Jacksonville Childrens Commission
    All Assitant Management Improvement Officers (AMIO crony appointees)
    "Make a Scene" downtown
    "Art in Public Places"
    Take home vehicles for all employees.

    After cutting all this and we still have problems with funding THEN we can talk about tax increases.

  22. Enough is enough! We "common" people get taxed the hardest when things get tough. Have you thought about how many rentals there are around Jacksonville & those folks sure are not paying any taxes. Don't forget the government buildings & the churches, they don't pay taxes either.
    The only way to hit everyone is through a gas tax. You might not qualify to buy or own a home, but, you sure do manage to have a car to get you from Point A to Point B. That way, everyone that has those gas hogs can help pay for our taxes & we "common" people who have the cars that get better mileage to the gallon will still have to conserve, but, heck, we have been doing that anyway. The only satisfaction is that one of our biggest accesses is the tourist are also helping pay our taxes buying gas as they stop on their way through. Let's spread this around so we can maybe see an end to this mess.

    • The city cannot "live" off the home equity scam anymore than homeowners or investors. It IS time for user fees to be put in place. Degrading the value of Florida real estate by taxing it to death is a death spiral. Since everyone wants to be a renter I would propose that a renter tax be imposed so that renters can pay for the schools, fire rescue, police and a host of other services that they use. Landlord is a joke now, investors are land slaves to the tax man. I can't raise rents how can the city continue to raise taxes? (no cap for non homestead), solid waste fee, bogus appraisals investors know they have to pay for all this junk not to mention insurance. A $35,000. foreclosure needing $10,000. worth of cash repairs is not worth buying because it will not cash flow especially when the appraiser thinks it is worth $115,000.
      Foreclosures, ghettos, vacant, abondoned, churches, non profits do not pay taxes. Close to 40% of all real estate in florida is investor owned, get the picture Mayor? User fees, renter tax, investor credit (not penalty) thats how we can get back on the right track. And don't even get me started on health care....................

    • It appears that our government does not look at the real picture. Yes, taxes are needed to run a city; however who are we taxing? THE ANSWER SHOULD BE EVERYONE! At this time it is only property owners and businesses that are taxed....Have you noticed that there are less and less of those now? I have always felt EVERYONE who lives in the city should contribute and be responsible for their share of taxes: this includes RENTERS, CHURCHES, NON-PROFIT. People by nature don't value what is handed out to them; we home owners and businesses are being discriminated against and are being forced to bear the burden for all.
      :

  23. This talk about more taxes is very disturbing especially when we are the ones paying the salaries of those in office. I remember saying that I could never be in politics because I am too honest. I guess it would be too hard to put the people first before your government pocket. When companies worry about budgets they realign their companies positions. I have even seen some companies because they want to keep all the employees ask if they would prefer a paycut instead of losing their jobs. The have also looked at their spending habits. How many supplies have been purchased that really was not necessary? Or springing for lunch on the taxpayers dollars? That's just a few things of unneccessary spending. Has the government in the City of Jacksonville actually looked at all the possibilites to eliminate unneeded costs or create revenue? Do we really need a new courthouse???? And I really think that library participates wouldn't mind paying $5 a year for a library pass. It would be better than paying the property tax increase. I would vote no on the tax hike but find a more suited way to come up with the deficeit. I wonder if how much they could make with a car wash??? just a thought

  24. What are people's thoughts on the Fair Tax?????

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