© 2024 All Rights reserved WUSF
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
0:00 0:00
Available On Air Stations
You Count on Us, We Count on You: Donate to WUSF to support free, accessible journalism for yourself and the community.

Tampa property taxes would increase under Jane Castor's proposed 2024 budget

Jane Castor standing at a podium
City of Tampa
The average Tampa homeowner would pay $19.29 more a month in property taxes under a budget Mayor Jane Castor proposed for the 2024 fiscal year on Aug. 3, 2023.

The increase would mean the average homeowner would pay $19.29 more a month to address transportation, infrastructure, and other areas.

The average Tampa homeowner would pay $19.29 more a month in property taxes under a budget Mayor Jane Castor proposed for the 2024 fiscal year.

Castor told the Tampa City Council on Thursday the increase is necessary to fund needed projects around transportation, housing, and infrastructure.

"Frankly, we've done everything we can with what we have," Castor said. "But the public is demanding we do better with potholes, housing, and other necessary services."

The proposed budget recommends a millage rate increase of 1.0 — the first such increase in 30 years. The rate has stayed at 6.2076 since the 2018 fiscal year.

The increase would allow the city to construct 102 neighborhood projects, 17.5 miles of new sidewalks and 25 traffic signal replacements over the next five years.

Castor said the increase would also help Tampa brace for future growth.

"We must also think about future residents, and how our investments in transportation, and parks, public safety, will impact how and where live and work — and most importantly, their quality of life," Castor said.

"Over 50,000 new residents in the past decade and tens of thousands of new jobs means higher demand for services and more wear-and-tear on our infrastructure. With an expected 150,000 new residents and 250,000 new jobs in the next 22 years, protecting our quality of life requires better infrastructure and smarter growth."

The increase would also generate around $45 million in new investments that would go toward transportation, public safety, parks, and housing.

"We can leverage these dollars in several ways to fund projects across the city," Castor said.

That, Castor said, would help address the issues she said voters have previously indicated they would support.

"These are needs, they're not wants," she said.

Castor's proposal comes two weeks after city officials unveiled its 30-year plan, called Tampa MOVES, to address traffic congestion, at a cost of $2 billion.

The $1.92 billion budget also proposes increased funding to the Tampa Police Department, Tampa Fire Rescue, Tampa Parks and Recreation Department, and housing affordability efforts. If approved by the city council, it would take effect Oct . 1.

I wasn't always a morning person. After spending years as a nighttime sports copy editor and page designer, I made the move to digital editing in 2000. Turns out, it was one of the best moves I've ever made.