Miami-Dade Commissioners Are Rational

The Miami Herald reports that the Commissioners of Miami-Dade County voted to hold the property taxes flat.

The 8-5 vote throws into doubt whether many programs — ranging from meals for the elderly to domestic violence counseling to grants for small businesses — can be funded under the tax rate adopted by the board.

The commission’s vote pushed the county’s budget gap to $444 million, increasing the threat of layoffs and pay cuts for county employees. Commissioners have two weeks to decide precisely how to carve nearly a half billion dollars out of a $7.5 billion budget.

The commission vote, which concluded at 4:30 a.m., calls for more drastic cuts than sought by county Mayor Carlos Alvarez. In July, Alvarez proposed a small tax increase and $427 million in cuts, including laying off 1,700 county employees and 5 percent salary reductions.

Voting for the flat tax rate: Javier Souto, Joe Martinez, Rebeca Sosa, Carlos Gimenez, Bruno Barreiro, Natacha Seijas, Jose “Pepe” Diaz and Sally Heyman.

Voting against: Chairman Dennis Moss, Barbara Jordan, Audrey Edmonson, Dorrin Rolle and Katy Sorenson.

This is an important lesson for the Commissioners of Coral Gables!

About Stephen E. McGaughey
International consultant in financing development programs and projects

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