Business - August 8, 2017

Seminole Tax Collector Joel Greenberg clashes with Commissioner Brenda Carey, bans her from his offices

Seminole County Tax Collector Joel Greenberg said Tuesday he is banning County Commissioner Brenda Carey from his offices after he said the longtime elected official launched into a profane tirade Monday while transferring tags.

Carey disputed Greenberg’s account, saying she went to the tax collector’s office as a “private citizen” to conduct business and got into a conversation with a clerk but denied using profanity.

Carey, who was first elected in 2004, and other commissioners have been exasperated with Greenberg for his stance against turning over excess millions of dollars collected by his office to help fund county government operations.

Greenberg, a political newcomer who was elected in November after earlier ousting longtime tax collector Ray Valdes in the GOP primary, said he made Sheriff Dennis Lemma aware of the situation and vowed if Carey steps inside one of his offices he’ll ask that she be cited for trespassing.

Seminole commissioners have been trying to persuade Greenberg to reconsider his budgetary stance so they can avoid increasing taxes to pay for services such as parks and recreation. Greenberg said he needs money generated by his office to beef up his operations and is under no requirement to follow Valdes’ custom.

He said his budget is overseen by the state Department of Revenue and that county commissioners have no say over his spending.

This is a breaking-news story. Please check back later for updates.

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