LUTZ — Tax Collector Mike Fasano will open his first Wesley Chapel office Monday morning at Compark 75 on County Road 54.
Fasano said the new office will be staffed by veteran employees and new hires. He has hired 30 new workers this year to accommodate the Wesley Chapel expansion.
Fasano said the staff held a soft opening last week to test the equipment. “We wanted to make sure everything was running smoothly before Monday,” he said. “So far so good.”
The Wesley Chapel location will be a full-service office, which includes residential and commercial property tax, business receipt tax, driver's license testing and renewal, automobile, vessel and motorcycle registration and title work, birth certificates and other services.
“We actually register more voters than the supervisor of elections,” Fasano said.
The office is in Compark 75 at 4610 Pet Lane, which is off Wesley Chapel Boulevard in Wesley Chapel. Fasano said the office park serves as a perfect substitute for a closed driving course. The office already has issued six driver's licenses to teens who passed their driving test.
“The new Pasco County Tax Collector office in Wesley Chapel is long overdue,” Deputy Tax Collector Billy Poulos said. “The area has seen a tremendous amount of growth and deserves to have our services at its doorstep. For far too long the residents of Wesley Chapel have had to drive far distances to visit our offices. Those days are long gone as we open what is to be the new standard in tax collector offices. ... The residents of Wesley Chapel as well as the rest of the county deserve a state-of-the-art facility, which will help us deliver our services effectively and efficiently.”
Fasano pointed out that Pasco has the only tax collector offices in Florida that are open on Saturdays, which means he gets a lot of customers from neighboring counties. “The only thing they can't do here is pay their property taxes,” he said.
Auto Magnate Larry Morgan owns the office park and spent about $15 million for a new entrance drive and two new speculative buildings. Fasano originally planned to open an office closer to Interstate 75 at The Grove shopping center, but he canceled that lease after finding out the building would need extensive repairs. He signed on with Morgan, making the tax collector the first tenant in the newly constructed building.
The public is invited to attend the grand opening event.