Friday, September 25th, 2015 at 12:50pm


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Conner Pushes for the Highest Impact Fees in the State

The Lake County Board of County Commissioners voted to move forward with an ordinance to increase the Lake County School Impact Fees from $7,719 (third highest in the state of Florida) to $9,324, which would be the highest in the state of Florida and the nation.  In a 4-1 vote, with Commissioner Leslie Campione voting against it, the Lake County Commission turned its back on jobs.  The surprise vote was Commissioner Sullivan who has typically been more fiscally conservative.

Only 23 of the 67 counties in the state of Florida have School Impact Fees, and Lake County has the highest.  When you include the Transportation, Library, Fire, and Parks Impact Fees with the School Impact Fees, Lake County has the highest overall Impact Fees in the state and one of the highest in the nation.  These Impact Fees are costing jobs, and a lot of them.  When a piece of raw land has a structure put on it, the tax base increases tenfold for perpetuity.  Impact Fees are just another money grab by an out-of-control government, which cannot control expenses.

Why should this matter to every citizen in Lake County?  The only reason home values and the economy started improving in Lake County was because Impact Fees were waived and reduced to zero.  Housing and commercial construction drug Lake County out of the Great Recession, and they are the primary reason why home values started increasing for all property owners.  This week, new construction permits plummeted in Lake County.  These Impact Fees will only make it worse because new homes cannot get the appraisals needed for financing.  This is a job destroyer for working families.

It is hard to justify these School Impact Fees when Sumter, Marion, and Citrus Counties do not have any School Impact Fees, and Lake’s proposed School Impact Fees will be almost $3,000 more than Orange County.

This is not name calling but simply the truth—the Lake County Commission is nothing more than taxers and spenders led by Commission Chairman Jimmy Conner.  There is not a tax they will not raise or a project they will not spend money on.  This bunch complains that commercial development is not moving to Lake County, and their taxing policies are the reason why.

Let’s see what these four Lake County Commissioners have taken from the taxpayers.

  • They voted to renew the Penny Sales Tax for 15 years.  Lake County’s 7% sales tax is higher than Orange, Marion, and Volusia Counties.  It should be for 5 years, not 15.
  • Despite their claims, Lake County is increasing property taxes this year on Lake County property owners by $2.2 million.  Just look at their budgeted revenues for 2016 as compared to 2015.
  • Last year, they increased property taxes on Lake County property owners by a whopping 13.8%.  (Sullivan did not vote for this.)
  • In January, while no one was watching, these Commissioners voted to renew the Local Option 4 Cent Gas Tax on residents until 2043 (28 years).  This covers about 60% of road maintenance, yet we thought the Penny Sales Tax was being used for that.
  • In September 2014, these four Commissioners adopted one of the highest Transportation Impact Fees in the state—up to $4,066 per house in South Lake County and thousands of dollars on new businesses.  This is crippling new business investment.
  • This month, these four Commissioners voted for the highest School Impact Fees in the state—$9,324 per home.  Sumter, Citrus, and Marion Counties do not have School Impact Fees, and they have better schools.
  • Plus, they have increased just about every fee and regulation in Lake County over the last several years.

The final public meeting and vote on these School Impact Fees will be September 29, 2015.  Let your Commissioners know how they are destroying jobs.

On November 3, 2015, Vote Against the Infrastructure Sales Surtax Referendum (Penny Sales Tax Renewal), because the ordinance is badly written, and you don’t want to give the politicians a blank check.  Let’s make them do it right—the ordinance should only be used for new schools, roads, and utilities while protecting Lake County taxpayers and workers. 

If you would like someone to come and speak to your group about the Penny Sales Tax, 

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  1. Anonymous says:

    There is one good thing about the impact fees. It will slow down the development of new homes . I moved to this beautiful area 14 years ago from so Florida. This area I s loosing all the beautiful scenery. I seen south Florida ruined by over development. We have a wonderful unique area why ruin it by covering it with nothing but houses?

  2. Name says:

    This article is absolutely correct, the County has done an extremely poor job of representing taxpayers. If I’m not mistaken, every elected official on both the BoCC and School Board is a Republican…aren’t you guys supposed to be fiscally conservative, business owners, etc? Well, your ilk has done a horrible job, and my children are suffering in one of the worst ranked school districts in the State, while I am not getting my money’s worth out of my taxes. Throw the bums out! Like it or not, the local Republican party is largely to blame for this mess…how about some diversity of ideas on the local elected boards?!

  3. Ben Dover says:

    If the people were to wake up they would come to realize you can not vote them out. Most of what we have here we didn’t vote “in” in the first place. Elections especially here in Florida have been nothing but illusions – they beg the voters to either request absentee ballots or show up to vote and to achieve that voter turnout they even extended the one day election day to whatever it takes to get the maximum number of gross votes possible in an election cycle. Google Clint Curtis – he is the man who invented the vote rigging chips for Tom Feeney and Jeb Bush after the 2000 elections. See his testimony before a congressional delegation – then realize that former Nebraska Senator Chuck Hagel owns the company that owns 2/3’s of the voting machines in America. Now you can see why George Walker Bush left Chuck Hagel with his brother Barry O’bush when he left the white house. The optical scanners are rigged to elect their chosen ones or their chosen issues such as the 1 Cent tax in November 2015 – their machines will pass the one cent tax because Jimmy Conner, Bob McKee and the court house mafia has got to have that law passed and for fifteen years so they can use it for collateral for bonds or more loans. What ever they want they will get because they do not have to care what the people think or say – they are in total control of everything – why do you think they have kept Gary Borders in the sheriff’s office with all the hell he has brought to Lake County? Because they know with him and his dark side friends in the court house and most of the city halls they can get away with anything they do including murder. Lake County being right between Disney and the Villages is special because the dark side runs everything from both directions. They run the IRS and the FBI out of here – Richard Nixon couldn’t even do that – the IRS got his VP and the FBI tied him to Watergate. These local criminals are like the self ordained god father Bob McKee tells everyone “I’m untouchable” and he knows of what he speaks – he’s a convicted felon with no high school diploma and run out of the Navy for lying after just 52 days – everyone knows that but he’s still handling Billions of dollars as Lake Tax Collector and Cornerstone Hospice collecting millions in Medicare and Medicaid dollars. Everybody who votes should demand an immediately site of sale itemized receipt for who they just voted for. You get it at every retail register in the USA – but they can’t figure out how to do it from their rigged voting machines!

  4. Name says:

    Any Lake County resident who is not outraged by this most recent display of out of control political power is either one of these commissioners family members, political cronies or just not paying attention to what is happening here in Lake. The latter is of course is what they count on especially at election time. These crooks are simply out of control. They must be voted out ! We can start by voting NO to the penny sales tax extension. Wake up Lake County.

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