While serving as a Deputy Tax Collector for Palm Beach County, I discovered that exemption entitlements were being withheld from my fellow Veterans. These entitlements are guaranteed under Chapter 205 of the Florida State Statutes and include not only Honorably Discharged Veterans, but any person over the age of 65, and many other individuals (please see the full list below on the attached exemption form). The seal of the Tax Collector's Office states 'Collect, Educate, Distribute.' By not informing those that are eligible of their right to this exemption, the Office of the Tax Collector has failed the tax payers of Palm Beach County.
What has changed during the incumbent's 13 year tenure? I would say nothing significant at all. The wait times at the service centers for even the simplest transactions are ridiculously long due to inefficiency and mismanagement. The office is woefully outdated in terms of technology which leads to endless delays and misplaced or lost funds.
Perhaps the biggest debacle of all has been the incredibly misguided attempt to self-regulate the short-term rental industry with an unnecessarily complex and cumbersome Tourist Development Tax account requirement that has left countless property owners confused, frustrated, and facing hundreds of dollars in penalties.
The tax payers of Palm Beach County deserve better. We can and must make changes that modernize and increase efficiency. The office of the Tax Collector must be more fair and transparent with our tax payers. It must be remembered that the office of the Tax Collector is a Public SERVICE not a business! It is time to start working FOR our tax payers and citizens, not AGAINST.
ITS'S TIME FOR A CHANGE!
I am a Christian, a Veteran, a Business Owner, and an experienced Public Servant. My mission is to put SERVICE back in to Public Service. I intend to instill the values of Fairness, Kindness, and Transparency to the Office for the tax payers and our employees. I will modernize our processes to make them more cost effective, cut wait times and increase accuracy and efficiency.
Join me on Election Day, NOVEMBER 3, 2020, and VOTE FOR CHANGE! Thank you.
- Frank Ciatto