.25 mill is estimate to create a municipality, per Save Siesta Key group

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If Siesta Key becomes its own municipality, leaders of the Save Siesta Key group estimate that only a .25 millage levy will be required. They call it a “bare-bones” number.

For a Siesta Key property valued at $479,000, which is the median assessed value for the Key, the local tax bill would be $119.75 per year. The owner of a $1 million home would pay $250 annually.

Residents would still pay taxes to Sarasota County, as well. The new bill would result in a 7.8% tax increase in what residents currently pay, Save Siesta Key reported.

The calculation is based upon a “Government Lite” model the Save Siesta Key group has embraced, where the elected council would not be paid and only four to eight employees would be hired to run the municipality. A town manager, town clerk, plus land-use and code-enforcement personnel would likely be necessary hires.

Meanwhile, many services would be outsourced to the county.

The group shared the information at a July 22 public meeting. The calculation is based upon an economic feasibility study it had completed by consultant Bill Underwood. Such a study is one of the requirements of an incorporation application to the Florida Legislature. If approved by the state through a special act, a local referendum would follow. State leaders will first look at the application during their 2022 session, which begins in January, and approval there would be followed by a vote by registered Siesta Key voters in the spring. The earliest Siesta Key could be designated a town is Dec. 31, 2022.

Underwood will be discussing his feasibility study at Save Siesta Key’s next public meeting: Wednesday, Aug. 18, 7 p.m. at Siesta Key Chapel, 4615 Gleason Ave. The meeting can also be viewed on Save Siesta Key’s YouTube channel.

Millage, or mill rate, is a term some states and localities use to calculate property tax liability. Property tax itself is sometimes referred to to as “millage tax.”

A mill is one one-thousandth of a dollar, and in property tax terms is equal to $1 of tax for each $1,000 of assessment.

With property values continuing to rise on Siesta Key, incorporation group leaders said they are optimistic that mill rates won’t be needed to be raised, unless by local choice for the desire to fund projects and/or increase services.

John Morton
Author: John Morton

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