Property Taxes & Fees

Winter 2008 – President’s column

Q. Where do your taxes and fees go?

A. Wherever the elected officials want to spend them.

First, a disclaimer: This column is non-partisan. This column is political.

Elected officials control the expenditure of our tax and fee contributions. Today, the expenditure of these revenues is not necessarily invested in the neighborhoods from whence they came. (This holds for the City, County, State and Federal Government.)

In our own District 2 of the City of Miami, Comm…

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Spring 2006 – The fire rescue fee fiasco – lessons to be learned

President’s Column By T. Sinclair (Tory) Jacobs

The Fire Rescue Fee Fiasco reminds me of the movie title “Sex, Lies & Videotapes” without the sex and without the videotape.

Although Judge Lopez has made his ruling on this case and said the unsavory settlement cannot stand and a class action may move forward, it’s important that you, BHA members, know the BHA involvement.

A bit of history… In 1998 a consulting firm set up by an up-state law firm came up with a s…

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Summer 2000 – Controversial fire rescue fee struck down

This judicial ruling just in on a special assessment in North Lauderdale nearly identical to Miami’s “Fire Rescue Fee.” The word: illegal.

This has been BHA’s belief, and the legal position of the warriors at BHA ally, TTUFF (Tenants and Taxpayers United For Fairness, Inc.), ever since the City enacted the fee in 1998. TTUFF’s subsequent class action suit against the City of Miami has been slowly making its way through the legal process, while in the meantime, Brickell res…

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Fall 1999 – Condos exempted from supplemental waste fee

Success! Condominium owners were exempted from the City of Miami’s “Supplemental Waste Fee,” the City’s newest revenue-generating measure intended for commercial businesses.

After months of discussions with Commissioners, the City Manager and the City’s legal department, the BHA was successful in convincing City Commissioners that residential condominium buildings should not be included.

The Commission originally passed the ordinance last spring for “commercial establis…

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Summer 1998 – Would you knowingly overpay your income taxes?

Why Overpay Property Taxes? 12 Points For Condo Owners

By Sheila Anderson

Taking income tax reductions is as American as apple pie. Taxpayers have the right to pay the lowest taxes permitted by law. In fact, most people recognize their net worth is protected by the tax deduction process.

Similar principles of taxpayer protections apply to property. Every state has a system whereby owners and their agents can make sure allowable deductions are considered and applied t…

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Summer 1998 – President’s Column

By T. Sinclair (Tory) Jacobs

Do we know who we are? Does the City of Miami know who we are? What difference does it really make?

The recently enacted Supplemental Waste Fee assessed against commercial establishments erroneously included condominium associations. When we brought this mistake to the attention of Commissioner Plummer, J.L. sponsored a remedial ordinance which passed on first reading four to one. However, its passage at the second reading scheduled for Sept…

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Summer 1998 – Identity crisis: Condo owners face “commercial” fees

Just when the Brickell Homeowners Association seemed to be making headway with the notion that City residentswhether living in condos or single-family dwellingsshould be treated equally since they contribute to the tax base at the same rate, the Miami City Commission likened condo associations to commercial enterprises. The result is that condo associations throughout the City of Miami are finding themselves included in the latest revenue-generating fee enacted by the commiss…

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Spring 1998 – Condo owners to pay for illegal dumping in Miami and more for their private haulers

To the dismay of many residents, two other revenue measures passed by the City of Miami Commissioners will be financed by Brickell homeowners, along with other condominiums and businesses throughout the City.

The City’s new “Supplemental Waste Fee on Commercial CU’s” will help finance the cost of picking up illegally dumped garbage throughout the City, a 65,000-ton annual problem. The new fee is based on Certificates of Use. For a BHA condo association, this amounts to $14…

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Spring 1998 – Fire rescue fee: Reasonable or dangerous precedent?

Neighbors fear floodgate opened

For some, the battle of the Fire Rescue Fee is settled. The final amount of the fee seems much more palatable than the proposed $160 a year a mere $24 for condominium and single-family owners.

The tax is also being imposed more equitably than originally proposed condo, apartment and single-family owners will all pay, rather than just condo and apartment owners.

Further, the fee is being used for capital improvements of the fire rescue …

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Summer 1995 – President’s Column: Property taxes

The Brickell Homeowners Association is made up of 21 condominium associations ranging in size from four units to 552 units. The residences are located on Brickell Key and from 15th to 25th Roads on both sides of Brickell Avenue.

The City of Miami Finance Department records for 1994 show that BHA members represent 5.1% of the residential units in the City, and pay 9.3% of all residential property taxes collected by the City.

These numbers understate the neighborhood’s co…

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