|Published:||Apr 30, 2013 9:00 AM EDT|
|Updated:||Apr 30, 2013 10:21 AM EDT|
CAPE CORAL, FL--People living in Cape Coral or running a business there will have to pay a new tax. City Hall was packed for hours with people fired up over this new tax proposal.
Going in to the meeting, a 10% public service tax was proposed, but council voted on a 7% PST and voted to only charge the tax on anything over 500kwh on a residential electric bill.
Leonard Libersher is just one of hundreds that were fired up about the new tax.
"It is going to affect the well being of my tenants," said Libersher.
Libersher owns many rental properties across the Cape and even though his renters would be the ones footing the bill for the new tax because they are the ones who pay the electric bill, he says it would affect him dramatically.
"My customers, it is going to cost them more to live in my homes, and rather than live here in Cape Coral, they will live outside the city," Libersher said.
It's called a public service tax and would basically cost 7% of your LCEC electricity bill. Some were so fired up about it, a petition could be in the works.
"I will head it up," said resident Pamela Fleming. "I will do the leg work," she said.
Council member, Rana Erbrick, said the goal is to add about 20 million dollars to the budget for capital projects.
"We are not thrilled about it, I am not thrilled about it, but I am looking at the future of the city and we have got to do something," said Erbrick.
Erbrick says without the tax money, the city would have to keep cutting and would start with parks and rec.
Some say even though it may cost more now, the future is worth it.
"A lot of the stuff we use on a regular basis and it is important to us that it stays open," said renter Corey Ruffin.
This is just one leg of a three prong approach for the Cape to become more financial stable and diverse.
The next step would be to add a fire service tax and then lower the home tax rates.
Council says all that is planned to take affect October 1st.