District reduces tax rate for 10th year, funds major water supply projects in nearly $164 million budget

PALATKA, Fla., Sept. 27, 2022 — While funding an unprecedented number of projects, the St. Johns River Water Management District’s Governing Board on Tuesday adopted its fiscal year 2022‒2023 budget and reduced its millage rate for a 10th consecutive year, keeping taxes low while providing significant funds for water resource protection and cost-share projects. District programs and projects help to ensure sustainable water resources, increase water conservation, provide flood protection and protect water quality in springs and other priority water bodies across 18 counties in east-central and northeast Florida.

What a typical District homeowner can expect to pay in 2020 for their water management district portion of their tax bill at 0.2189 millsThe District’s cost-share partnership efforts since 2014 have provided for approximately 130 million gallons per day (mgd) of alternative water supply, conserved 22.1 mgd of water, protected 5,126 acres from flooding.

The adopted 0.1974 millage rate will result in more than $95.46 million in revenue toward a total $163.73 million budget for fiscal year (FY) 2022‒23, which begins Oct. 1, 2022. The budget is also funded through state, federal, local, and other District sources (including timber sales, cattle leases, interest earnings, and permit fees).

The budget adopted by the board is approximately 10.9 percent higher than the FY 2021-22 Adopted Budget. The millage rate is about 9.8 percent less than the current year’s tax rate. In order to reduce the burden of taxpayers, the District has adopted the rolled-back millage rate since FY 2013–14.

Under a 0.1974 millage rate — 19.74 cents for every $1,000 of assessed property value — the owner of a $200,000 house with a $50,000 homestead exemption would pay $29.61 in the coming year in property taxes to the District.

The budget will fund the District’s major programs, including water supply planning, priority water body and springs restoration, and continued cost-share partnerships supporting local communities’ water quality, water supply, and flood protection projects.

Budget highlights include:

  • More than $38.48 million in cooperative funding to support water projects in economically disadvantaged rural communities and for innovative technologies, as well as springs and priority water body protection and restoration, water conservation initiatives with public water suppliers, and projects to enhance the reuse of reclaimed water.
  • $13 million in state funds for several alternative water supply projects.
  • $7.16 million for springs protection projects.
  • Continuation of the Black Creek Water Resource Development project ($100 million) to provide up to10 million gallons per day in aquifer recharge to the Keystone lakes region when complete.

The final budget is now available on the District’s website, https://www.clone.sjrwmd.com/finance/budget.