Tax increase discussed in pension shortage

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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - A possible tax increase is one option being discussed to deal with Jacksonville's growing pension shortage.

A special subcommittee on the mayor's retirement task force met Thursday to look at how the city can pay to fix the problem.

No action was taken, but the committee is looking at alternative ways to fund the pension deficit, including more money from employees and the possibility of a property tax hike.

Council President Bill Gulliford was at the meeting. He is not on the task force but says members need to look at all options, not just raising taxes.

"I think we have to at potential revenue sources," Gulliford said. "I think raising the ad valorem tax by two mills is probably unrealistic. I don't know what we do, but I think we need to investigate every single option available. But we are looking at a $2.5 billion unfunded liability. We are not magicians. We inherited this thing "

The committee meets again Friday.

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