County ponders presidential security tax on Mar-a-Lago

A Palm Beach County commissioner proposed the tax to cover the cost of protecting Trump

Mar.March 19, 2017 10:00 AM

Mar-a-Lago in Palm Beach

County officials have considered raising property taxes on Mar-a-Lago to cover security costs due to President Donald Trump’s frequent trips to what he calls the “Winter White House” in Palm Beach.

CNN also reported that the Palm Beach County sheriff’s department spends $60,000 on overtime every day the president spends at Mar-a-Lago.

The county’s total spending on Trump-related overtime pay may exceed $1 million during the president’s stay at Mar-a-Lago this weekend. Prior to this weekend, President Trump had spent 14 days in South Florida since his inauguration in January.

Dave Kerner, a Palm Beach County commissioner, has proposed a higher property tax on Mar-a-Lago to cover the county’s security costs when Trump visits the Palm Beach estate.

Kerner, a Democrat, doubts that a security-based tax assessment on Mar-a-Lago would win approval, but he says it is an idea worth considering.

Palm Beach County’s spending on presidential security is a fraction of the amount in New York City, where officials say the cost of protecting Trump around the clock exceeds $1 million a day.

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio requested $35 million from Congress to pay for expenses related to protecting Trump in December.

In a letter to members of Florida members of Congress, Palm Beach County Mayor  Paulette Burdick asked for federal financial help in covering “assumed unbudgeted expenditures arising from the security detail of President-elect Trump.”

Burdick, a Democrat, told CNN on Friday that no one had responded to her letter yet. [CNN]Mike Seemuth

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