Below is the speech given by Diane Kobernick at the BOCC meeting on Oct 23,2018:
Commissioners, you have place 4 referendums on this year’s Ballot for a total of $241,500,000 (241 and ½ MILLIONS) to be paid over 30 years.
You are asking us to vote in favor of more than $70 Million ( $70,200,000.) for Fire-Rescue Facilities. This is in addition to what we already pay on our property taxes. May I remind you that in 2004 Pasco voters approved Penny for Pasco tax sales increase of which $2.9 million of this money was to build 2 new Fire Stations on SR 52. Commissioners, you chose to shelve that project. Now you want us to vote in favor for more money? Should we believe you now that you will actually build the facilities?
You are also asking for $20 Million for Parks and Recreation because you say (and I quote: Are In Critical Need). Yet, you continue to purchase land to create more parks. Commissioners, YOU have voted for a portion from Penny for Pasco to buy land under the ELAMP program. By your own admission, you can’t even keep up what you already have. Why should voters vote in favor of giving you more money? A basic principal of business is that you don’t incur long term debt to pay for short term operating expenses. You budget for them.
You are also asking more than $18 Million for Libraries ($18,600,000) Again, by your own admission is in “critical need”. Why have you allowed this to get to this point?
You are also asking for more than $132 Million) for jail facilities ($132,150,000). This is a lot of money. Can we be sure that you will not shelve this project for something else?
Voters should be informed on County’s spending. By the County’s own representative, Pasco County does not have any policies and procedures to spend taxpayer monies (at least in the land purchasing department). There are no checks and balances on how you spend OUR money.
- You are spending MILLIONS on buying land to create new “preserves” and parks that you don’t have money to maintain
- You buy these lands at premium prices without doing proper due diligence, then discover contamination and find yourselves in need of cleaning up the contamination at taxpayer’s expense
- You have no problems spending over $ 18 MILLION on a road to nowhere because you say it is needed for evacuation. Yet, that has been recently proven inaccurate.
- You have no problem paying Washington lobbyist thousands for said road
- You have no problem forgiving impact fees for developers.
Reading the Pasco County Budget is an eye-opener. There is enough money in the budget if the County were better stewards of taxpayer money. STOP WASTING TAXPAYER MONEY