By NewsLine Staff
St. Johns County Tax Collector Dennis W. Hollingsworth, CFC, distributed $4,306,939.51 to the local government and taxing authorities, from unused earned revenue collected during fiscal year 2015 – 2016. The largest portion of this amount, $4,051,485.32, was presented to the Board of County Commissioners and other taxing authorities at the regular County Commission meeting Tuesday, Nov. 1.
This $4.3 million represents unused revenue the Tax Collector’s office earned for the taxpayers of St. Johns County that was not expended or used in the operation of the local tax, tag and driver license offices. The Tax Collector’s office is self-sustaining, operating from monies regulated by Florida Statutes on commissions from the collection of taxes and fees for the mandated State functions of several agencies. These agencies include Department of Revenue, Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission. The additional revenue also was generated through the expansion of services provided, as interest earned from savvy investments, as well as revenue from additional tag and title business the Tax Collector actively seeks through acquisition of fleet accounts such as UPS and Ring Power.
“The Tax Collector’s office operates independent of the County Commission’s budget,” Hollingsworth said. “We must operate our office solely on statutorily established commissions and fees from state and local governments.”
The unused revenue Hollingsworth collected over the past year is a result of the tax, tag and driver license offices operating with frugality, efficiency and creativity. Hollingsworth said he is honored to serve the taxpayers of St. Johns County by managing their Tax Collector’s office in a fiscally responsible manner and continues to seek new ways not only to serve the residents of St. Johns County but also increase revenue for the County.
“The latest addition of services we provide are birth certificates and concealed weapons application acceptance,” he said. “Providing these services is a win-win for St. Johns County,” Hollingsworth continued. “It is convenient for local residents in need of such services, and the revenue received from these services augments the funds we can present to the County Commission and other taxing authorities to support the public we are elected to serve.”
The total amount distributed includes monies that are generated by the office and received throughout the year from other State agencies, such as mobile home revenues received from the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles and revenues from Retained Vessel Fees which are distributed weekly by the Tax Collector’s office.