Budget & Finance
In an effort to provide business continuity while maintaining the health and safety of our employees and the community, the Monroe County Purchasing Department is making changes to its process for receiving and opening of sealed bids. These changes will be communicated to plan holders of existing and future bids through DemandStar.
The Budget and Finance Office will not be opened to the public. The department is actively involved in Emergency Management in response to COVID-19 and will continue to serve in that role until further notice.
Fiscal Year 2021
The Monroe County Board of County Commissioners met virtually to adopt the fiscal year (FY) 2021 $460,311,267 budget. The budget is 2.6 percent lower than last year’s budget and includes a certified aggregate millage rate of 3.3435, which is less than originally estimated in July 2020 of 3.3602. The budget includes the Board of County Commissioners, the constitutional officers (sheriff, supervisor of election, clerk of court, and property appraiser), the Tourist Development Council, capital projects, and reserves.
Monroe County Administrator Roman Gastesi and Budget and Finance Director Tina Boan presented the budget for discussion and in relation to COVID-19 that included residential real estate trends, taxable property values, sales taxes and state shared revenues, along with fund balance, reserves, and general fund.
“Since I have been with the County, we have met rollback six out of the 12 budgets. This year, it just isn’t feasible with the uncertainty,” said Gastesi. “This is, by far, the most difficult and uncertain budget we have presented. We will continue to monitor revenue and save money with expenditure reductions, while staying fiscally conservative.”
Due to COVID-19, immediate action was taken within the County to identify, analyze, and estimate potential shortages and at-risk revenue sources. The County immediately instituted a hiring and purchasing freeze and furloughed employees who did not have work due to the county closures. The County also suspended discretionary spending and unnecessary travel and deferred work wherever possible. County staff made cuts to make up for shortfalls, including the elimination of 42 positions plus five contracted positions. There will also be no cost of living increases or merit raises for staff.
Many capital projects will also be pushed into the next two to five years. The commissioners will set a special workshop in November to discuss future capital and pilot projects. The commissioners also approved agreements with local non-profit human service organizations, Monroe Council of the Arts, Historic Florida Keys Foundation, and two agreements with the Guidance Care Center for substance abuse mental health and the jail in-house program.
With this budget, a homesteaded residential property with an assessed appraised value of $389,026 in 2021 (with a 2.3 percent capped increase to property value from the previous year, average taxable value) would have a $19.25 increase for the year, or $1.60 a month. Along the same lines, a non-homesteaded property with a $620,248 (average taxable) value in 2021 would increase to $139.73 per year and commercial properties with a $1.124 million (average taxable) value would be $253.24 per year.
Fiscal Year 2020
The Monroe County Board of County Commissioners adopted the 2020 budget and millage rate at its final public hearing held on Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2019 at Murray Nelson Government Center in Key Largo. The budget reflects the commissioner’s direction to meet increased service demands and workload, continued Hurricane Irma recovery, infrastructure improvements, and future challenges, like climate change and sea-level rise.
The Countywide certified adopted millage rate by the BOCC for Fiscal Year 2020 is 1.66 percent above the rolled-back millage rate from 2.5459 to 2.5881. Per the BOCC’s authorization, a new taxing district to help fund a new hospital in the Middle Keys encompassing Mile Marker 40 and Mile Marker 65. With the new taxing district, the aggregate millage rate is 3.14 percent above the rolled-back millage rate. Ad Valorem taxes collected overall will be $95.3 million.
The $472,696,406 budget covers the Board of County Commissioners’ operating budget, capital projects, and constitutional officer’s budgets.
Within the budget, a net of an additional 11.5 new Board of County Commissioner positions was approved. Positions include assistants for the Guardian Ad Litem and Social Services, a park director and maintenance worker, a fleet mechanic, fire marshal, and two fire inspectors, four firefighter positions for Monroe County Fire Rescue’s Sugarloaf department, two fleet mechanic/generator technicians, and a safety office administrator. The Board also approved an up to 4 percent raise for County employees, which will include a cost of living increase and possible merit-based raise.
The budget goes into effect Oct. 1, 2019.
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POpens a New WindoVision
The vision of the Budget and Finance Department is to be a fiscally responsible, customer-focused team that is striving for excellence at all times.
We are dedicated to sustainability by managing programs, services, and their related resources as efficiently and effectively as possible and communicating the results of these efforts to the public.
The mission of the Budget and Finance Department is to provide effective development and implementation of Monroe County’s budget; promote efficient, sound financial management; ensure governmental procurement regulations are followed countywide; facilitate financially responsible grant funding; and maintain the highest standards of ethics, integrity, and prudent expenditure of public funds.
The Monroe County Office of Budget and Finance provides coordination and development of the fiscal year budget. The office continues to work on receiving refunds from FEMA from the impacts of Hurricane Irma and now COVID-19, while still providing for the daily operations of the department, program enhancements, and capital projects and improvements.