Children’s Trust approves first budget reading 

Children's Trust of Alachua County logo on door
Photo by J.C. Derrick

The Children’s Trust of Alachua County (CTAC) unanimously approved a proposed millage rate and tentative budget for the 2023-24 fiscal year in its first TRIM hearing on Wednesday. 

CTAC’s proposed millage rate is 0.4212, the rollback rate from last year, which is projected to bring in over $9 million, about $800,000 less than last year. The Children’s Trust also plans to gain about $425,000 in interest and a little over $100,000 in contributions from private sources. 

The Children’s Trust’s expenses, through grants and aid, personal services, operational expenses, task forces and capital reserves, add up to a proposed expenditures budget of $18,425,708, which is 28% larger than last year’s budget. Over half of that budget goes toward grants for community organizations that adhere to CTAC goals. 

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When CTAC amended its strategic plan over the summer, it narrowed its goals to helping provide three things for children in the community: health and nurturing caregivers, tools for success and thriving and a safe community. 

The June discussion of CTAC’s strategic plan is also when the board decided to keep the rollback millage rate, instead of increasing to its maximum 0.5 rate. 

TRIM, or Truth in Millage, establishes a procedure for taxing authorities to follow, ensuring that citizens have enough information to participate in the public hearing process. Though there was no citizen input at Wednesday’s meeting, community members will have another opportunity at the next TRIM hearing on Sept. 25 at 5:01 p.m. 

In CTAC’s regular meeting on Wednesday, the board approved six organizations recommended by Executive Director Marsha Kiner for a youth mentoring RFP. This RFP has up to $500,000 allocated and out of 19 applicants, six met the requirements: Big Brothers Big Sisters, Education Foundation, Community Impact Corporation, I am Stem, Made for More and Motiv8u. 

If there is funding left over after agreements with these organizations have been negotiated and executed, CTAC staff may use the remaining money to consider funding additional program. 

Editor’s note: This story has been updated to show the correct millage rate of 0.4212.

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