The town of St. Leo has adopted a budget of $4 million for the 2023-2024 fiscal year.
This year’s budget represents a miniscule of decrease from the $4.1 million budget last year, with the St. Leo Town Commission approving the incoming budget in a meeting on Sept. 19.
The town is expected to generate total general funds of slightly more than $1 million through sales and use taxes, licenses and permits, intergovernmental and miscellaneous revenues.
St. Leo also has $2 million in reserves.
Expenditures are estimated at just over $2.5 million, stemming from general government, public safety, physical environment, human services and other non-operating uses.
General government has the highest expenditure at $428,315.
The town plans on spending $142,181 of general funds on public safety, plus an additional $25,000 in the category of physical environment.
Transportation and special projects are earmarked for $293,000 of special revenue funds of $1.9 million.
Included in this year’s budget are funds for the St. Leo Town Center: the town’s newest attraction that was announced, and graciously welcomed by citizens and nearby college students, in February.
The multi-faceted town center is planned to be at the corner of what is now known as County Road 52 (formerly State Road 52) and Lemon Road, less than a mile from the university that also bears its name. It will feature restaurants and vendors, event and entertainment space, gardens and more, as it aspires to become a tourism destination.
Additionally, the town will work with the Florida Department of Transportation to reconfigure the intersection of County Road 52, College Avenue and Pompanic Street, and convert the now confusing, flashing-light stop, into an easier-to-navigate, traffic-friendly roundabout.
Special Revenue funds totaling $1,807,227 are budgeted for the Town Center under “Non Operating Uses” and “Transportation and Special Projects.”
More than $1.2 million has been set aside for the Town Center, with the funds coming from the Penny for Pasco initiative. Additionally, $225,000 is budgeted for stormwater impact fees and funds for Lemon Street.
St. Leo officials told The Laker/Lutz News the Town Center project is still in some design phases and does not have an actual groundbreaking or start date. However, officials added, “Ideally, we would break ground as soon as possible in (fiscal year) 2024.”
Founded in 1891, St. Leo is the oldest incorporated municipality in Pasco County. The town is approximately 858 acres in size, much of which is Lake Jovita. The most recent population estimate is 2,362.
The five-person Town Commission consists of Donna DeWitt, Mayor Vincent D’Ambrosio, Mayor Pro Tem James Hallett, Curtis Dwyer and William Hamilton.
For more information about the town, its commission, permits, applications and other issues, visit TownOfStLeo.org.
Published September 27, 2023