Caloosa Belle

Hendry County budget approved

The Hendry County Courthouse (photo courtesy Waddy Thompson)

Hendry County taxpayers will feel a little more pinch in their tax bills for next year. Tuesday evening the commissioners approved a millage rate of 8.4909 – a 1.09 percent increase. The rolled back rate was 8.3329 mills.

The county’s 2015-16 budget stands at $69,872,896.

Both the millage and budget decisions were unanimous.

Board Chairman Karson Turner noted that in previous years the county budget reached over $90 million and said that as the economy grows, the board can look at doing more.

He wondered about eventually being able to “gift” funds to both LaBelle and Clewiston to improve their respective community centers, LaBelle Civic Center and John Boy Auditorium. He said both need facilities where they can host first class events. Commissioner Taylor said the county needs to address its own facilities first. Commissioner Turner felt that the cities lose money by waiving fees for local groups.