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Fire commissioners approve district’s millage rate, budget

By TIFFANY REPECKI / trepecki@breezenewspapers.com - | Sep 29, 2020

TIFFANY REPECKI The Captiva Island Fire Control District's commissioners approved the purchase of new mobile and portable radios for the district so it is in compliance with Lee County's radio network upgrade.

The Captiva Island Fire Control District’s commission adopted a final millage rate of 1.7540 mills and a budget of $3,959,246 for the upcoming fiscal year at its recent second and final budget hearing.

On Sept. 24, the commissioners voted unanimously 3-0 for the proposed operating rate — a 0.78 percent increase over the rolled-back rate of 1.7405 mills — plus the general fund for 2020-21.

A mill is $1 per every $1,000 of taxable valuation. The rolled-back rate is the rate it would take to generate the same amount of revenue in the coming fiscal year as was generated in the previous year.

The Lee County Property Appraiser’s Office certified that the gross taxable value for operating purposes not exempt from taxation within Lee County to the fire district as $1,508,437,106.

The approved budget includes appropriations and revenue estimates.

For the resolution on the millage rate, Commissioner Sherrill Sims moved for its adoption, with Commissioner Jeffrey Brown seconding the motion. On the budget resolution, Commissioner C.W. Kilgore moved for its adoption, with Brown seconding it. Both motions passed in separate votes.

There were no questions from the commissioners prior to the votes being taken.

Sims reported that she is “very satisfied” with the budget.

“I think we were all in total agreement,” she said.

Kilgore noted that Fire Chief Jeff Pawul has worked hard to keep district expenses down.

“This is a well-honed budget,” he said.

“We are very blessed with the crew here, run by Chief Pawul,” Kilgore added. “We have full confidence in him, and he’s filled us in all along the way (during the budget process).”

At the first budget hearing on Sept. 10, Pawul explained that the district would be able to accomplish some good things next fiscal year without raising the millage rate, to include technology upgrades.

“I think it’s a fiscally responsible budget in order to operate efficiently,” he said last week after the resolutions were approved. “The commission did a great job in contributing to and supporting them.”