Taxing Authorities

There are over 45 different taxing authorities in Pinellas County which affect various tax districts. They include the county commission, municipalities, school board, transit, water management and fire districts. These different entities all have public hearings on budget requests for the upcoming year. Each entity will set a proposed millage rate necessary to fund the budget at one of these hearings.

County Aggregate

This County Aggregate comprises three funds: General, Health Department and EMS.

The General Fund operates all the County services, such as:

  • The County correctional system.
  • 911 Emergency Communications System.
  • 22 parks and a museum.
  • Air and water quality programs.
  • Dog and cat licensing, immunization and adoption programs.
  • Enforcement of local environmental ordinances protecting wildlife, trees and grounds.
  • Comprehensive planning.
  • Economic and medical assistance to persons in need of basic necessities.

The County Aggregate also includes funding for the Sheriff, Clerk of the Circuit Court, Supervisor of Elections and Property Appraiser.

The Health Department operates various county health programs such as screening, monitoring and immunizing for certain communicable diseases, administers school health programs, family planning and prenatal care.

The EMS Program provides the County’s Emergency Medical Services, including paramedics.

Pinellas Planning Council

The Pinellas Planning Council provides countywide planning necessary for orderly growth, development and environmental protection of the county as a whole. The Council coordinates all countywide planning and development with the Tampa Bay Regional Planning Council and the Florida Department of Community Affairs.

School Board

The School Board operates and maintains Pinellas County’s public school system, including academic instruction, administration and support services.

Cities / Towns

The 24 municipalities in Pinellas County provide police, fire, sewer, garbage collection, street lighting, street repair, school crossing guards and crime watch programs. They operate libraries, municipal golf courses, recreation complexes, parks, cemeteries, wastewater treatment plants, and senior citizens’ and community centers. They also enforce city housing and development codes.

Municipal Services Taxing Units (MSTU)

The MSTU provides various services to residents in the unincorporated areas of the county, such as:

  • Law enforcement (Sheriff’s Department).
  • Issuing construction permits.
  • Enforcing local building codes and the State energy code.
  • Providing on-site inspection during all phases of construction.
  • Reviewing applications for land-use plan changes, site plans and rezoning.

Fire Districts

The 12 fire districts in Pinellas County provide fire protection for residents in unincorporated areas.

Library Services

Library Services allows citizens the convenience of one library card for 15 member libraries and provides a broad interlibrary loan and information network.

Palm Harbor Community Services District

The Palm Harbor Community Services District provides funding for the operation and maintenance of a public library facility, recreational facilities and programs and related land acquisitions.

Feather Sound Community Services District

The Feather Sound Community Services District funds street lighting, recreational and green space acquisition, development and maintenance.

Southwest Florida Water Management District

The Southwest Florida Water Management District is one of five regional districts charged by the state to preserve and protect Florida’s water resources. Its mission is flood control, water supply and water quality. The District covers all or part of 16 counties.

Pinellas-Anclote River Basin Board

The Pinellas-Anclote River Basin Board is one of eight watershed basins within the Southwest Florida Water Management District. This basin board is responsible for identifying the water-related concerns and problems within the basin, adopting budgets to support those concerns and funding resolutions to the problems. Funded projects include reclaimed water, conservation, flood plain analysis, stormwater management and water quality.

Pinellas Park Water Management District

The Pinellas Park Water Management District builds and maintains major stormwater drainage systems.

Juvenile Welfare Board

The Juvenile Welfare Board (JWB) is the first independent, special taxing district dedicated solely to children’s services, created by voters in 1946. JWB plans, coordinates, advocates, funds and evaluates programs for children and families. The Board contracts for services with public and not-for-profit agencies and programs countywide. JWB focuses on positive development for children and families and the reduction of risk in the areas of substance abuse, violence and harmful sexual behavior. The focus of services and activities is asset and community-based, emphasizing ages 0-6 and 10-14 using support and youth development principles.

Transit District

The Transit District administers the countywide transit system, including more than 40 bus routes and Demand Response service for 21 municipalities and the unincorporated areas. It advocates mass transportation.

Clearwater Downtown Development Board

The Clearwater Downtown Development Board assists the City of Clearwater in the analysis, formulation and implementation of downtown development plans.