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Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Back impact fees, commissioner-from the St. Pete Times

I thought this was worth reading. I know it's not in our County but it really says it all about the state of mind people are in now.

Editor's note: The following letter is addressed to Commissioner Gary Bartell and is being printed at the author's request.

I consider you one of the good guys and have voted for you as long as I have lived in Citrus County. Now, I am asking once again that you and your fellow commissioners exercise some fortitude and implement the recommended impact fees that we paid a consultant a lot of money to advise you all.
I gather from the newspapers that you are vacillating and leaning toward phasing the fees in. I would submit to you and the others that phasing in has been happening for many years. The only phasing in I have seen is exorbitant tax bills on those of us who own property.
If you do not implement the fees fully, our real estate tax bills are going to soar due to the downturn in real estate sales and property values. It's bad now, but you "ain't seen nothing" until that happens.
Have you considered the negative impact that not raising the fees is doing to those of us who want to sell our property? When are you all going to protect the homeowners rather than developers? All you have to do is look at the projected figures for the future and realize that all Florida is going to grow tremendously regardless of your raising impact fees.
Those fees are amortized over 30 years and the interest is tax-deductible and likely will only be paid for the five years that most live in a home. I believe it comes to about a pack of cigarettes a day. I hope I won't have to quit smoking so I can pay my taxes. Commissioners Joyce Valentino and Vicki Phillips are on the right side and it's time for you to vote the way we believed you would.

Frank B. Hill, Homosassa

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