By Tim Pallesen
    
    City commissioners urged more generosity for police officers as they approved a $103 million city budget that will increase taxes for most property owners.
    The new tax rate of $7.46 for every $1,000 in taxable value is slightly lower than last year’s rate of $7.51.
     But tax bills will go up after the county property appraiser raised Delray Beach property assessments to generate nearly $3 million more in tax revenue this year.
    Salaries for city police officers are uncertain in the new budget because the city manager and police union are at a deadlock in contract negotiations.
    Commissioners Al Jacquet and Adam Frankel urged interim City Manager Terry Stewart to make police officers happy as the tax rate and budget were approved on Sept. 16.
    “I’m sick and tired of the Police Department feeling that we don’t care,” Jacquet said. “Please, let’s negotiate in good faith. Let’s give these guys something that they can feel good about.”
    Several Delray police officers have left for higher paying jobs in other departments. “If we keep losing our police officers, the next thing to go will be our businesses,” Jacquet said.
    “It looks like negotiations have not been in good faith,” Frankel said.
    “The recession is over. The city is booming,” he said. “Now we have the money and we need to take care of our people.”

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