The tax rate paid by City of Gulf Breeze residents on municipal utility services for water, gas and electricity will rise by 2.5 percent to a new level of 7.5 percent under a proposal supported by the city council on Wednesday night.
The new rate is coming at a time when the city’s budget is squeezed and less than two weeks following the enactment of a controversial surcharge on the municipality’s South Santa Rosa Utility service to non-city residents in the Tiger Point area.
Planned to start April 1, the new rate would add in the range of $5.32 to $13.86 to monthly electric bills and from 77 cents to $2.28 monthly to typical natural gas fees, according to a city hall memo. Typical residential water bills would rise by $8.64.
The increased rates would add generate about $212,000 a year for the city’s general fund, much of it intended for street maintenance and stormwater improvements. Council members pointed out that the fee won’t apply to non-city residents who are customers of SSRU.