Elected property appraiser four years ago, he’s running for anther term in office

Ed Brimner is running for re-election as property appraiser.


It is an honor to serve as your Wakulla County Property Appraiser and I am asking for your support for my re-election.

I was elected in 2020 and took office on Jan 5, 2021. In my first campaign, I promised to improve our office to better serve citizens of Wakulla County and build a culture that follows the law and treats every citizen equally. I knew changes were needed when I ran; however, the change in leadership was more important than I realized.
The following changes were made to fulfill my promises:

  • Insisted on professionalism, including customer service, dress, and punctuality.
  • Changed internal purchasing procedures so no one person could autonomously approve expenditures, make purchases, and approve payments.
  • Consolidated multiple bank accounts into one to simplify banking functions and improve transparency.
  • Installed a state-of-the-art mass appraisal computer program to improve accuracy and efficiency.
  • Improved our public website to enhance our citizens’ user experience and provide better access to data.
  • Waived the requirement for an annual application for multiple exemptions including widows, blind persons, persons totally and permanently disabled, spouses of first responders who die in the line of duty, and others. This saved thousands of dollars in postal costs alone.
  • Implemented a new process of annual Agricultural Classification renewals. A bulky, time-consuming, and expensive process was reformed and saves our citizens money and vastly improved accuracy.
  • Replaced poorly maintained full-size vehicles with fuel-efficient mid-sized trucks.
  • Renovated offices to improve employee morale and make better use of office space.
    The culture of this office now reflects the desire to follow laws and serve our fellow citizens. Many of the changes made were needed due to years of poor management culminating in the removal of the prior property appraiser for fraud.
    On my second day in office, I discovered the IRS had filed a Federal Tax Lien against this office totaling $58,441.95, including civil penalties of $55,929.33 for errors dating back to 2015. After 6 months of constant work, the civil penalties were waived and we received a Release of Federal Tax Lien on June 23, 2021.
    When I took office, an out-of-town CPA firm performed the Property Appraiser’s accounting and payroll. Mr. Greg James, the Wakulla County Clerk of Court and Comptroller, informed me his office performed accounting and payroll functions for other county offices and could provide this service to the Property Appraiser’s office. With the Clerk’s help, we are saving Wakulla Citizens tens of thousands of dollars every year. An additional benefit of this agreement is there is even more oversight on internal spending.
    Unfortunately, there have been some hiccups during the last three years. The “BIG ONE” involved a vacant parcel that was inadvertently assessed at $307,500,000 rather than the correct amount of $7,500. The Wakulla County Tax Collector noticed this larger than usual tax bill and alerted us. I immediately informed our taxing authorities. Budgets were adjusted and no money was wasted. A new internal check was implemented to prevent a recurrence of this error. The system of checks and balances worked.
    To maintain an acceptable quality of life in Wakulla County, local governments need revenue. Your property taxes support public education, law enforcement, fire safety, street maintenance, parks and recreation, and other services. Florida statutes require the property appraiser to assess all property using the “market” value; which means the price a typical buyer would pay for your property. This office has a legal responsibility to study property sales and appraise your property accordingly. Determining a fair and equitable value is the only role of this office in the taxing process.
    If a property appraiser fails to do their job, assessed values become skewed. Some people are forced to pay more than their fair share of taxes to support government operations. Artificially low assessments on some buildings forces our taxing authorities to raise the millage rate on all citizens to make up the difference. A expert property appraiser is important.
    This office has many other responsibilities including:
  • Tracking ownership changes
  • Tracking permits and documenting new construction
  • Accepting and approving applications from individuals eligible for exemptions and other forms of property tax relief
  • Keeping descriptions of buildings and property characteristics up to date
  • Analyzing trends in sales prices, construction costs, and rents to best estimate the value of property
  • Maintaining maps of parcel boundaries
    I know how important fair assessments are for local families and small businesses. I remain committed to honest and impartial assessments. I am also committed to customer service and the philosophy of continuous improvement. I will continue our outreach to Wakulla citizens and plan to implement a public education program to better educate property owners and real estate professionals on tax exemptions and other techniques they can use to reduce their tax burden.
    I hold a Florida License as a State-Certified General Real Estate Appraiser, License number RZ3797. In addition, the Florida Department of Revenue recognizes me as a Certified Florida Appraiser. I am active in the Florida Association of Property Appraisers and serve as the District 1 Director on the Board of Directors. I also serve on the Property Appraisers’ Association of Florida’s Legislative Committee and actively lobby Senators and Representatives concerning issues impacting our citizens. The second district court also recognizes me as an expert witness on real estate valuation issues.
    When I’m not in the office, I’m usually surrounded by family and friends. My wife, Tina, and I have three children and eight grandchildren (with another on the way) to keep us busy. I have always attempted to live a life of service and am proud of the service of my children. I served in the military for over 20 years. My oldest daughter’s husband is a Florida Trooper, my youngest daughter’s husband is serving in the Air Force as a Tactical Air Controller, and my son is a helicopter pilot in the Army. It is an honor to live a life of service.
    I have worked hard and have been privileged to serve Wakulla County these last three and a half years. I will continue to work hard and am ready to serve another term as your Property Appraiser. I humbly ask for your vote in August.