In a 4-3 vote, the Key West City Commission approved the fiscal 2023/2024 budget during the final public hearing on Monday.
The ordinance sets the millage rate at 2.0822 mills, which translates to $2.08 per thousand dollars of assessed property value. This is the same millage rate as the 2022/2023 budget.
Finance Director Christina Bervaldi points out that homesteaded properties are protected by the Save Our Homes Act cap of 3 percent or cost of living increase, whichever is less.
The overall budget, which includes proprietary funds like sewer and stormwater, is $252,048,018. The general fund, which is the City's operating budget, is $89,919,383.
With over $22 million in grant funding identified and several increased revenue sources, the fiscal year 2024 budget continues to address many City of Key West strategic priorities identified by the community, including environmental, sustainability, and resiliency efforts, a continued focus on City-wide cleanliness, street, traffic, and pedestrian improvements, and affordable housing initiatives.
The budget allocates funding for several major capital projects, including the Southernmost Point repairs and enhancements and the construction of the John Jones Navigation Center and the Bahama Village Douglass Community Center. It allows for developing a citywide Comprehensive Safety Action Plan for our multi-modal transportation efforts.
In addition to capital projects, there are major investments in public safety vehicles and equipment, sewer and stormwater systems, and improved technology throughout the City.
Funds have been allocated for improvements to our City's numerous parks and recreational facilities, including enhancements at the Truman Waterfront Amphitheater, the turfing of the Dewitt Roberts softball field, and renovations at Bayview and Cozumel Parks.
The budget includes allocations for increased personnel and operational costs, which all businesses and organizations in Key West are experiencing. It also provides assistance to youth recreational leagues and local non-profit organizations.