Palm Beach County budget battle

PALM BEACH COUNTY, FL (WFLX) - Whether it's the synchronized swimmers worried about the county shutting down their pool, the visually impaired worried about higher Palm Tran bus fares, or neighbors in West Boynton worried about losing patrolmen, someone is bound to be disappointed.

It will be kind of like ordering food at a restaurant; the Palm Beach County board will look at a roster of cuts or increases they will either accept or decline.

They'll decide on Palm Tran fare increases, how much to spend on nature centers, and whether to accept $5 million in cuts to the sheriff's office.

That's why the county administrator expects 250 people to observe the proceedings Tuesday night in person.

They are expected to rail against those cuts because the sheriff's office could have to pull services from areas around Boynton Beach.

Why are such deep cuts proposed? After five years of smaller cuts, the administrator says there's nothing but the big stuff left.

"Many people would argue that the sheriff service is as important as any. But for someone who is needy and needs senior services and needs food delivered to their house, that's very important to them. For other people, having a park open is very critically important. For some, Palm Tran bus service is the most important thing we do," said Robert Weisman, the Palm Beach County administrator.

On the issue of taxes: even though the total tax rate will go up by three percent, lots of people will pay less next year because home values have dropped so significantly.

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