Ormond Beach won’t be lighting up Labor Day after all.
For the second time in three months the city has canceled its fireworks show.
The City Commission voted May 12 to move the Fourth of July fireworks display to Labor Day weekend because of pandemic concerns.
But with Gov. Ron DeSantis’ state of emergency in effect through at least Sept. 5 – the same night as the city’s rescheduled fireworks show – the commissioners decided to heed a staff recommendation and cancel again.
“I hate to do it,” Mayor Bill Partington said during the July 28 virtual commission meeting. “But I feel like we’re in a tough time, a difficult situation. Out of an abundance of caution, making sure we’re providing the safest options possible, this year we probably have to forego any fireworks celebration. We already missed the Fourth of July obviously. We don’t want to do anything that might fire up a (Covid-19) resurgence.”
Commissioner Dwight Selby suggested another alternative, postponing again until Thanksgiving weekend, saying that could help local businesses kick off the Christmas season.
Commissioners Troy Kent and Susan Persis agreed that another postponement would be more desirable than an outright cancellation.
City Manager Joyce Shanahan said the city has until Aug. 14 to inform Fireworks by Santore that it is canceling without facing a fee.
Ms. Persis suggested that if Thanksgiving weekend is not available on Santore’s calendar the city could instead schedule fireworks in conjunction with the city’s Christmas parade.
When the commission voted in May to move the fireworks display to Labor Day weekend, it also agreed to add five minutes to the show at an added cost of $7,000 to the $58,000 it had budgeted for fireworks.
Tentative Millage Rate
Following a budget workshop, city commissioners unanimously approved a tentative property tax millage rate of 3.9068 (about $3.90 per $1,000 of taxable income) for the 2020-21 fiscal year at its July 28 virtual meeting.
Commissioner Selby noted that despite an anticipated reduction of over $1 million in sales tax revenue alone, a typical home owner with a property value assessed at $200,000 would pay $13.87 less than last year with the proposed rate.
The first public hearings for the city budget and property tax rate will be Sept. 9.