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Tim Howard
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THE VENICE CITY COUNCIL ON TUESDAY VOTED TO SET THE MAXIMUM TAX RATE OF 3.77 MILLS FOR FISCAL YEAR 2012.  THAT WOULD BE AN INCREASE FROM THE CURRENT RATE OF 2.77 MILLS, WHICH HAS BEEN THE RATE FOR THE PREVIOUS FOUR YEARS.  IF THE CITY ADOPTS THAT MILLAGE RATE, THE OWNER OF A $100,000 HOME WOULD SEE A TAX INCREASE OF ABOUT A HUNDRED DOLLARS A YEAR.  HOWEVER, COUNCIL MEMBERS MADE IT CLEAR THAT THEY ARE NOT LIKELY TO ADOPT THAT MILLAGE RATE, BUT THEY DO WANT WIGGLE ROOM AS THEY BEGIN BUDGET WORKSHOPS NEXT WEEK.  THE CITY REPORTS THAT PROPERTY TAX VALUES FELL BY MORE THAN FIVE PERCENT LAST YEAR.  TO KEEP THE PROPERTY TAX REVENUE FLAT, THE CITY WOULD HAVE TO ADOPT A MILLAGE RATE SOMEWHERE NEAR 2.93 MILLS.  INTERIM CITY MANAGER NANCY WOODLEY PRESENTED TO COUNCIL A FLAT MILLAGE RATE WITH A $2.4 MILLION DOLLAR SPENDING CUT AND THE ELIMINATION OF 23 JOBS.  THE FIRST BUDGET WORKSHOP IN VENICE IS SCHEDULED FOR AUGUST 3RD.