Mayor: Palm Beach may need to raise taxes to pay for Trump security at Mar-a-Lago
Palm Beach County officials are reportedly considering raising taxes if they don’t receive help from the federal government or President Trump himself to cover costs associated with Trump’s security during his visits to his private Mar-a-Lago club.
According to a report by CNN, the sheriff’s department said it costs about $60,000 in overtime every day Trump spends in Florida.
While the Secret Service is primarily responsible for protecting Trump, CNN reported that between the 14 days Trump has spent in Florida since taking office and a planned trip to Florida this weekend, the sheriff’s department will have spent more than $1 million.
The department could end up paying millions in overtime costs associated with Trump’s future trips, money not currently budgeted for the county, according to the report. And if the county is stuck footing the bill, some officials said they may have to raise taxes or cut services.
“It means the local taxpayers will have to bear the added burden of being part of the security for the president of the United States,” Paulette Burdick, the Democratic mayor of Palm Beach County, told CNN Friday. “It will either be cuts or increase in taxes.”
Similar concerns have been brought up in the past. Last fall, members of Congress from Florida wrote a letter asking the Justice and Homeland Security departments to reimburse Palm Beach County for hundreds of thousands of dollars spent protecting then President-elect Trump.
In a letter to former Attorney General Loretta Lynch and former Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson, Sens. Bill Nelson (D) and Marco Rubio (R) and Reps. Alcee Hastings (D), Ted Deutch (D), Lois Frankel (D) and Patrick Murphy (D) asked the agencies to use funds allocated by the continuing resolution Congress passed last month to repay the county for its expenses.
Burdick told the federal representatives that protecting Trump cost the county about $250,000 for four days over the Thanksgiving holiday.
CNN reported that the local sheriff in Florida met with Trump in February and discussed the need to get paid back for costs associated with protecting him.
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