Pasco budget goes on Weight Watchers
Pasco County's proposed budget for 2009 is $980-million -- a whopping $232-million less than this year.
The biggest reason: the end of the county's building boom, which has sapped impact fees from construction. Less notably: no salary increases for employees, service cutbacks and fewer purchases, such as library books.
There's also nearly $22-million in tax shortfalls, notably a $17-million drop in property tax revenue.
But the good news, particularly for County Commissioners seeking re-election, is the tax rate is staying the same, and there's not a deficit like last year. Last summer, the budget talks sparked a multi-million dollar fight over Sheriff Bob White's budget.
This year, almost his entire request, a nearly 2 percent decline from last year, made it into the proposed spending plan. The only thing White lost was his request for $1.5-million that he said he saved this year. Instead, that savings has been rolled into the entire spending plan.
-- David DeCamp/Times staff writer