Thursday, August 3, 2017 —
By Mayor George “Bud” Scholl
No one likes paying taxes and property taxes are no exception! However, I have good news regarding the portion of our property taxes that are collected for operating our City.
We take our responsibility for keeping the City’s property taxes as low as possible very seriously. In fact, for the 7th year in a row, we have lowered the City’s millage rate.
The City’s millage rate is the percentage of your property value that is allocated to contribute toward operating the City. There are currently 34 cities in Miami Dade County with property taxing authority. With the proposed 2017 decrease to 2.3 mills, Sunny Isles Beach is projected to maintain the 30th lowest millage rate in Miami Dade County. By way of comparison, if you owned a home right next door in Golden Beach, your 2016 millage rate would have been 8.4 mills. This means the City portion of your property tax bill would have been roughly 3 1/2 times the property tax bill that you would pay in Sunny Isles Beach.
An often misunderstood fact about property taxes is the amount of our taxes that are actually paid to our City. Property taxes are assessed and collected by Miami Dade County and the bulk of these funds are retained by Miami Dade County. The City only receives 12.5% of your total tax bill. If you look closely at your property tax bill you will find a breakdown that roughly looks like this: 40% School Board, 28% County Operations, 13% Fire Department, 1.5% Library, 5% Other, and 12.5% Sunny Isles Beach. Our residents often are under the impression that all their property tax payments are going to the City. This is clearly not the case.
Our philosophy is to stretch our property tax dollars as far as possible. While we have no control over what Miami Dade County charges, we are proud of the fact that the City of Sunny Isles Beach has one of the lowest millage rates in South Florida, which eases the property tax burden for all of our property owners.