County budget focus of commission workshop
The proposed budget for the coming fiscal year is scheduled to be discussed during the Pinellas County Commission workshop on Tuesday. The workshop, which is open to the public, is set to begin at 10:30 a.m. on the fifth floor of the Court House, 315 Court St., Clearwater. County Administrator Bob LaSala has proposed increasing the property tax rate that funds the county's emergency medical services system by about 21.7 percent.
Disaster recovery center offers help after Debby
The Federal Emergency Management Agency, in cooperation with Pinellas County Emergency Management and the state of Florida, has opened a disaster recovery center to provide services for those affected by Tropical Storm Debby. Services include assistance with applying for federal aid as well as state services for those who qualify. The center is from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily. Park Station, 5851 Park Blvd. Room 101, Pinellas Park. For information, call toll-free, 1-800-621-3362/TTY or 1-800-462-7585.
Proposal calls for JWB tax rate to increase
The Pinellas County Juvenile Welfare Board's property tax rate could go up by almost 8 percent in the coming year to pay for children's programs. The proposal, tentatively approved Thursday, would increase the rate from about .8337 cents per thousand dollars of assessed, taxable property value to about .8981 cents. JWB's taxes on a $150,000 home with a $50,000 homestead exemption are about $83.37 currently and would increase to about $89.81, about 7.7 percent. The rate will not be finalized until late September, after public hearings, and would not kick in until Oct. 1. The JWB was created to support the healthy development of all children and their families in Pinellas County through advocacy, research, planning, training, communications, coordination of resources and funding. Its current budget is about $55.9 million. The estimated budget for 2012-13 is $69.9 million.