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Santa Rosa Co residents could soon see property tax increase

SANTA ROSA COUNTY   --  The deadline for Florida counties to balance their budgets is just a few weeks away.

People in Santa Rosa County could see an increase in property taxes.
If the hike is approved, homeowners will pay about 18-dollars more for every 100,000 of the property's taxable value.
County leaders say the increase is necessary for county workers, like sheriff's deputies, to get raises.
The county has suspended cost of living and merit pay increases for employees for the past seven years.

Brian Speser, Property Owner: "We can understand that they need to pay these people. But we're under hard times, too."
Chris Kilpatrick, Property Owner: "For the protection of cops, it's not that much of an increase so, I would be willing to pay."

County leaders say the proposed property tax hike would bring in 1.4 million dollars in additional revenue.
The county commission will hold a final public hearing on the budget September 16th.