TAMPA - Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn this morning unveiled his $830.9 million 2014 city budget. The new budget is about 3 percent higher than the current one, thanks in part to rising property tax revenues. It's a spending plan that adds $350,000 and two new inspectors to the city's code enforcement staff at a time when the mayor is focused on reducing blight in some city neighborhoods. Five solid waste workers will be cross-trained to write tickets for code violations. The city also is filling two code enforcement vacancies under the current budget.
"That will be 9 additional bodies that will be involved in the code enforcement process," Buckhorn said. Other highlights from the budget include: A 2 percent pay hike for all city employees Seven new staffers for the city's parks department No increase in the city's tax rate. The 2014 budget reflects the city's expanding tax base and economy, Buckhorn said. He listed a half-dozen residential and commercial projects currently under way and noted that commercial building permits are on the rise. "In spite of this recession, it's been a good year," Buckhorn said. "There's been an excitement about Tampa that has been around in years." [email protected] (813) 259-7871 Twitter: @kwiatrowskiTBO