City of Sarasota property tax hike

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SARASOTA, FL---Sarasota property owners can begin to brace for a tax hike.  Sarasota city commissioner approved the 2014 budget and it includes and over all tax increase of 6.8%. 

The figure is the result of an 8.3 percent mileage hike and reduction of the city's debt ratio.  

City manager Tom Barwin says the increase is a small step in recovering the about 40% loss in tax revenue the city experienced over the past several years. 

And he says the change will mean an increase in services for tax payers.   "This budget begins the restoration of some services.  We will resume street sweeping now in all our neighborhoods on a monthly bases, it had been quarterly before.  We are increasing our grass cutting from a 10 day cycle to 7 day cycle.  This budget also includes $30 million of infrastructure and capital improvements, " added Barwin.

The list of budget components go on to include everything from road improvements to the city's pension obligations.  But it has left many residents unhappy. 

Coming up at 6 we take a deeper look into the City of Sarasota 2014's budget and what residents think about it.