For the longtime owner of a home assessed at $475,000,the council’s decision means a village tax bill of $1,299, or about $60 less than the previous year. With the larger tax cut, the bill would have been $1,169. All of these figures assume the homeowner qualifies for the homestead exemption and that the property appreciates in value by 1.7 percent, the state limit.
The council decided to cut the tax rate because the village manager’s proposed budget had projected a surplus of nearly $1.7 million. Even after the agreed-upon tax cut, the village expects to maintain a surplus well over $500,000. The village usually socks away surplus money into its capital improvements projects fund, also known as CIP, which is used for big-ticket expenses.
The council approved the $3 tax rate by a vote of 6-1.
In addition to changing the tax rate, the council added several capital improvement projects that they would like to work on in the future. The village has added to the CIP improvements for both the Key Biscayne K-8 Center as well as MAST Academy; the money will be used to alleviate overcrowding at K-8 Center and help expand the recreational facilities at MAST.
The village also has added to the CIP plans to help establish a permanent dog park after they found the current temporary dog park at 530 Crandon Blvd. to be a success. While the location has not been finalized, several council members suggested that it will likely remain where it is.
In addition, the CIP plan calls for a new amphitheater on the Village Green, a new senior center, and renovations for the village’s public library.