Manatee County's annual budget process begins with County Administrator's $1.5 billion recommended budget

Manatee County's annual budget process begins with County Administrator's $1.5 billion recommended budget
Posted on 05/28/2019

MANATEE COUNTY, FL (May 28, 2019) – Manatee County Administrator Cheri Coryea presented County Commissioners with a $1.5 billion budget for next year with funding for new Manatee Sheriff's Office deputies and employees, additional paramedics and a new Disaster Recovery Reserve that would be used to help rebuild the community in the wake of a natural disaster or other community emergencies.

The net budget, $736.8 million, proposes no property tax rate increase, but it slightly larger than the current year's budget because of property tax revenues rising an estimated 6.5 percent. Florida’s Save Our Homes homestead caps will prevent property taxes from increasing any more than 1.9 percent for Manatee County homesteaders.

Coryea recommends investments in six major areas: a continued commitment to law enforcement and public safety; infrastructure improvements (Capital Improvement Program and Infrastructure Sales Tax); employee compensation and workforce well being; enhanced communications; meeting the public’s level of service demands for 2020; innovation and technology investments. She said the theme of this year's budget is a focus on results that will be delivered for investments.

Many of the highlights are part of a Recommended Budget video Coryea played for the Commissioners today.

"In the upcoming budget you’ll be presented with opportunities, challenges and a desired result for Decision Units and Programs within department requests," she said. "This method will allow you to measure the success of your decisions this year by investing in the desired result. By the time you see the budget for 2021 you’ll know if the results you invested in during 2020 paid off."

The recommended budget proposes: 

  • Funding for 20 new Sheriff’s Office employees, including funding for 10 new deputies, four additional correction officers, a chemist, a crime scene technician and a deputy to provide security for the State Attorney’s Office. The County will split the cost of three new School Resource Officers for the new schools opening this fall;
  • Six additional paramedics to complete results-driven transition from 24-hour shifts to 12-hour shifts, improving response times during peak hours;
  • $6.5 million for a new Disaster Recovery Reserve that would be used to help rebuild our community in partnership with FEMA in the wake of a natural disaster or other community emergencies.
  • A new 3-1-1 Call Center to become a one-stop call center to resolve most citizen inquiries and requests. The 3-1-1 call center will be located in the Public Safety Center and can expand during emergencies and whenever there are significant events.
  • 3 percent increase for employee compensation issues.

County Commissioners will review the budget in great detail during a series of public workshops this summer.

All budget meetings will be held in the County Administration Building, 1112 Manatee Ave. W. during this summer schedule:

  • Thurs., May 30 at 9 a.m., Summary of Fund Analysis
  • Tues, June 4 at 9 a.m., department directors will present their departmental budgets and decision units along with the results they expect to deliver next year
  • Wed., June 5 at 1:30 p.m., Constitutional Officers present their budgets to the Board
  • Wed., June 19 at 1:30 p.m., Five-year Capital Improvement Program (CIP) 
  • Wed., June 19 at 6 p.m., Public Hearing is scheduled to receive comments on the Recommended Budget
  • Tues., July 30 at 9 a.m., Budget Reconciliation workshop gives Commissioners the opportunity to review additional information in response to “flagged” items, resolve remaining budget issues and set a tentative maximum millage rate to be provided to the Property Appraiser

Coryea said if recent U.S. Census estimates are accurate and the area is growing at a pace of between 8,000 and 10,000 people a year, Manatee County's population has likely surpassed 400,000 this year.

"We are one of the 100 fastest growing counties in the United States," Coryea said. "In recent years the Board has invested in employee compensation to keep pace with the market but we have not done enough to address the workload that results from 90,000 new people moving here since 2006."

She said Department Directors will explain their staffing needs during the June 4 budget workshop.

"This budget proposes to address employee workload, stress and morale issues through workforce enhancements to meet service demands," Coryea said. "On June 4 when Department Directors ask you to invest in their operations, they’ll also be explaining the enhanced results you will see in this commitment to address the rapid growth of our community."

In addition to the population growth, Coryea said more than half of the Board-approved 200-plus Infrastructure Sales Tax (IST) projects will be in motion over the next five years. Some of the capital and IST project highlights are:

  • An investment of $12.2 million for the Public Library System to enhance the Braden River ($1.1 million) and Rocky Bluff ($1.3 million) libraries and to build the new East County Library ($9.8 million)
  • The Parks System will receive a $68.7 million investment over the next five years, including funding for the Lincoln Park Pool, G.T. Bray pickleball courts, a Parrish Community Park and tourism tax investments to complete the Coquina Beach Stormwater and Parking project. The Parks budget includes $33.8 million for beaches and waterways, funded through grants and Tourist Development Tax.
  • $14.2 million is programmed for intersection improvements at
    • Erie Road and S.R. 62 in Parrish ($2.4 million)
    • S.R. 64 and Greyhawk Boulevard/Pope Road ($2.7 million)
    • $2.5 million for Lorraine Road intersections at 44th Avenue East and at Rangeland Parkway. 
  • $158.8 million in road projects including:
    • $50.2 million to complete a major section of 44th Avenue from 45th Street East to 44th Ave Plaza East; 
    • $10.5 million for 60th Avenue improvements near the Ellenton Premium Outlets, adding vehicle lanes, sidewalks and bike lanes;
    • $14.5 million for Canal Road improvements.

Two public hearings are scheduled for Sept. 10 and Sept. 17. All budget materials will be posted to the County’s website at as they’re available later this summer.

For more information on Manatee County Government, visit or call (941) 748-4501. You can also follow us on Facebook at and on Twitter, @ManateeGov.