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					Palm Beach County

        Resident
          Guide




           Enhancing your
Palm Beach County lifestyle




www.pbcgov.com
cOunty adMinistrative BuildinGs
           County offices include
            the Tax Collector and
Property Appraiser (Homestead Exemption)
       at the following five locations:

         Glades Office BuildinG
         2976 State Road #15
         Belle Glade, FL 33430
         Telephone: 996-4800

         Mid-Western cOMMunities
         service center
         200 Civic Center Way
         Royal Palm Beach, FL 33411
         Telephone: 784-1220

         nOrth cOunty
         GOvernMental center
         3188 PGA Boulevard
         Palm Beach Gardens, FL 33410
         Telephone: 624-6500

         sOutheast adMinistrative
         cOMplex
         501 S. Congress Avenue
         Delray Beach, FL 33445
         Telephone: 276-1200

         GOvernMental center
         301 N. Olive Avenue
         West Palm Beach, FL 33401
         (You can pick up free copies of
         county publications in the lobby.)
         Telephone: 355-3623




 Note: Except where indicated, all phone numbers in
      this publication are in the 561 area code.
                    Table of Contents

Introduction .................................................2
Greetings......................................................2
Government .................................................3
Getting Business Done...............................4
  Driver License/Disabled Parking ...............4
  Education...................................................5
  Health Care ...............................................5
  Landscaping ..............................................5
  Pets ...........................................................6
  Public Transportation.................................7
  Social Security...........................................7
  Taxes .........................................................7
  Trash Pickup/Recycling .............................7
  Utilities/Telephone/Cable TV .....................8
  Voter Registration ......................................8
Getting Connected ......................................8
  Employment...............................................9
  Frequently Asked Questions .....................9
  Libraries.....................................................9
  Palm Beach County Guide to Services ........9
  Parks/Pools/Beaches ................................9
  Tourist Attractions/Arts...............................9
  Web Site ..................................................10
Water Restrictions.....................................10
Hurricanes..................................................10
Telephone Tip ............................................11
Emergency Telephone Numbers..............11
Hospitals ....................................................12




                                 1
Introduction
     Whether you are new to Palm Beach County or have
lived here for years, this brochure can assist you with
day-to-day challenges such as getting a disabled parking
permit, taking night classes or registering to vote.
     Included in this publication is information to help you
get connected to your community including the county
                               parks, libraries and aquatic
                               facilities located throughout
                               Palm Beach County.
                                     This brochure also lists
                               all of the hospitals in Palm
                               Beach County that have 24-
                               hour emergency rooms and
                               all of the county government
                               administrative buildings.
                                     This guide can help you
                               get your “business” done
                               quickly, so you can have more
Palm Beach County has 47 miles time to enjoy all that Palm
of scenic ocean coastline.     Beach County has to offer.

Greetings from Palm Beach County!
      Palm Beach County has something for everyone.
The average temperature is 78 degrees; the 47-mile
shoreline has numerous public beaches; and the land-
scape ranges from urban to agricultural to natural wetlands.
      In Palm Beach County, there are more than 150 public
and private golf courses, hundreds of tennis courts, dozens
of parks, waterparks, boating docks, snorkeling and diving
sites, cultural and historic attractions, regional libraries,
several colleges and universities, adult education programs,
hundreds of houses of worship, and dozens of schools,
hospitals and shopping/entertainment centers.
      Palm Beach County government services include:
  • airports                • housing and community
  • animal care and control development
  • consumer affairs        • law enforcement
  • cooperative extension • migrant programs
  • emergency management • parks and recreation
  • engineering             • planning/zoning/building
  • environmental resources • protected natural areas
    management              • public transportation
  • family services         • roads and bridges
  • fire/rescue             • senior services
  • homeless counseling • social services


                              2
  • stormwater drainage • victim services
  • tourist development      • waste collection
  • veterans services        • water and sewer utilities
     Palm Beach County is geographically among the
largest of the 67 counties in Florida. Not counting Lake
Okeechobee, it encompasses approximately 2,000 square
miles and is larger than the state of Delaware. The county
is bounded by Lake Okeechobee, the Everglades and the
Atlantic Ocean, all of which offer recreational opportunities
in beautiful natural settings. The three multi-billion-dollar
industries in Palm Beach County are tourism, agriculture
and construction, with the western portion of the county pro-
ducing about 10 percent of the nation’s sugar.
     According to 2007 estimates, there are approxi-
mately 1.266 million people living in Palm Beach County.
The lifestyles of residents range from urban to rural, with
the more densely populated areas in the east. There are
38 municipalities in Palm Beach County ranging in size
from 172 residents in the Town of Cloud Lake to more
than 90,000 in the City of West Palm Beach. The
remainder live in unincorporated areas.
     Most municipalities provide residents with services
including water, refuse collection, law enforcement and
fire/rescue. In some communities, these services may
be provided by county government. To find out if a
property address is in an incorporated or unincorporated
area, visit www.pbcgov.com, put the cursor on “I Want
To...,” and click on “Find My District,” or call the Palm
Beach County Planning Division at 233-5300.

Government
     The Palm Beach County Home Rule Charter became
effective in 1985. True Home Rule gives the Board of
County Commissioners (BCC) the ability to create,
through a local public hearing ordinance procedure, local
laws that are not in conflict with or specifically prohibited
by state general law or the state constitution. This process
is done without going to the Florida Legislature to request
special legislation to create these laws.
     The seven-member BCC is the legislative governing
body of Palm Beach County. Commissioners are elected
to staggered four-year terms by voters in the district in
which they reside. Per a voter-approved referendum,
commissioners may not serve more than two consecu-
tive four-year terms. The Palm Beach County Charter
and Chapter 125.01 of the Florida Statutes establish
the specific duties and powers of the board. The BCC


                              3
adopts ordinances (local laws) and resolutions to estab-
lish policies and programs to protect the health, safety
and general welfare of Palm Beach County residents.
     The BCC usually meets on the first and third
Tuesdays of each month in the Jane M. Thompson
Memorial Chambers on the sixth floor of the
Governmental Center, 301 North Olive Avenue, West
Palm Beach. The meetings are cablecast on the county’s
government television Channel 20 and are also Webcast
on www.pbcgov.com. Workshops are usually held on the
fourth Tuesday of each month. The public may offer
comments to the board during “Matters by the Public”




Commission meetings are open to the public.

which usually occurs on the first Tuesday of each month.
At that time, citizens can address the board on any issue
under the jurisdiction of the board. Residents who wish
to speak are requested to complete a “Comments by the
Public” card.
     For more information on the meeting schedule, visit
www.pbcgov.com, put the cursor on “Residents,” and
click on “PBC Meeting Schedule,” or call 355-3229.

Getting Business Done
   The following information will help you get business
done quickly.

Driver License/Disabled Parking
     To get a Florida driver license, there are six locations
with various hours. To find the nearest location, call
681-6333 (or toll free 1-800-303-7288). For vehicle regis-
tration, titles, license plates and disabled parking permits,
call the Tax Collector’s Office at 355-2622.




                                   4
Education
     There are 185 public schools in the county: 103 ele-
mentary, 33 middle, 23 high and 22 alternative. The
school district offers 58 magnet programs, 25 choice
options and 51 career programs. There are also excep-
tional student education (ESE) programs for disabled
and gifted students and English for speakers of other
languages (ESOL) classes. To find out which school your
children will attend, call the Palm Beach County School
District’s Boundary Office at 434-8100. For information
on required immunizations and where to get them, call
the Palm Beach County Health Department
Immunization Program at 840-4568 (toll free 1-800-810-
1225), or visit www.pbchd.com.
     To get a list of private schools or for information on
home-schooling, call the Florida Department of
Education Office of Independent Education & Parental
Choice at 1-800-447-1636. To find the nearest Head
Start center, call the Palm Beach County Head Start
and Children’s Services Division at 233-1600, or visit
www.pbcgov.com/commserv for a list of locations.
     Adult education is also offered at public schools.
For the latest listing, call the Adult Education Center
at 640-5074 or the Adult and Community Education
Department at 434-8712. You can also visit
www.PBEducator.org.
     Palm Beach County has a number of colleges and
universities including:
          • Barry University
          • College of the Palm Beaches
          • Florida Atlantic University
          • Lynn University
          • Northwood University
          • Nova University
          • Palm Beach Atlantic University
          • Palm Beach Community College
          • South University

Health Care
    The Health Care District of Palm Beach County
(659-1270, toll-free 1-866-930-0035; www.hcdpbc.org)
helps low-income residents get health care coverage.

Landscaping
    Palm Beach County has several divisions that
handle specific landscaping issues such as tree prun-
ing. Contact the right division based on your issue:

                             5
Landscape Tree Replacement               866-540-2223
(PBC Zoning)
Tree Pruning Guidelines                       233-2400
(PBC Environmental Resources Management)
Landscape Tree Code Violations                233-5500
(PBC Code Enforcement)
Environmental Horticulture                    233-1759
(PBC Cooperative Extension)
     For tips on how to conserve water by using special
landscaping techniques and selecting appropriate plants,
call the Cooperative Extension Master Gardener Hotline
at 233-1750.




The 1916 County Court House has been restored to its original grandeur
and is open to the public. The new Richard and Pat Johnson Palm Beach
County History Museum is located on the second floor.

 Pets
     All dogs and cats in Palm Beach County are required
to have current rabies vaccinations and tags that can be
provided by any veterinarian or by Animal Care and
Control. The 2008 license tag fee for dogs and cats that
are not spayed or neutered is $75, and $15 for sterilized
pets. The owner of a non-sterilized dog or cat must sign
a written statement certifying that the animal will
not be used for breeding unless they have a breeder
permit. Hobby breeders are required to purchase a
breeder permit from Animal Care and Control. Call
561-233-1219 for permit information. There is a mobile
Spay Shuttle bus that offers a low-cost dog and cat
spay/neuter service. Call Animal Care and Control at
233-SPAY (7729) or 233-1261 for information. The fee is
$15 for Palm Beach County residents and free to county
citizens on public assistance programs.



                                  6
    Animal Care and Control has all kinds of pets ready
for adoption from the shelter at 7100 Belvedere Road,
West Palm Beach (233-1272). Adoption fees range
from $54 to $67, and residents 55 years and older are
offered special rates of $20 for dogs and $10 for cats.
For lost pets and animals available for adoption, visit
www.pbcgov.com/snap (Surf the Net-About a Pet).

Public Transportation
     Palm Tran, Palm Beach County’s public transporta-
tion service, has 36 fixed routes throughout Palm Beach
County. Visit any county library for route information or
call 841-4287 or toll free 1-877-930-4287. For informa-
tion on Palm Tran CONNECTION (door-to-door
paratransit van service for seniors and riders with
disabilities), call 649-9848 or toll free 1-877-870-9849.
For train information, call Tri-Rail (commuter routes) at
1-800-TRI-RAIL (1-800-874-7245).

Social Security
   To find the office nearest you, call 1-800-772-1213.

Taxes
     Property owners pay a county tax based on the
appraised value of their property. For more information,
call the Tax Collector at 355-2264 or the Property
Appraiser at 355-3230, or visit www.pbcgov.com/tax,
www.pbcgov.com/papa, respectively.
     If you are a homeowner in Florida, and your home is
your primary residence, you qualify for a $25,000 home-
stead exemption. Certain senior citizens may qualify for an
additional exemption. There are also widow/widower, dis-
ability and quadriplegic exemptions. These are all handled
through the Property Appraiser’s offices which are located
in the five administrative buildings throughout the county.
Hours are 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday.
(The locations are listed inside the front cover of this
brochure.) In addition to county taxes, property owners
may have to pay taxes required by municipalities and/or
various special taxing districts.

Trash Pickup/Recycling
     If you live in a municipality, call your city hall. If you
live in an unincorporated area, call the Solid Waste
Authority at 697-2700 (Boca Raton, Delray Beach and
The Glades: 1-866-792-4636). If you don’t know if you



                               7
live in an unincorporated area, call the Planning
Division at 233-5300, or visit the county Web site at
www.pbcgov.com/districtlocator. To obtain free curbside
recycling bins, call 1-866-NEW-BINS.

 Utilities/Telephone/Cable TV
      Electricity in most of Palm Beach County is provided
by Florida Power & Light (697-8000). In Lake Worth,
electricity is provided by Lake Worth Utilities (533-7300).
Drinking water is provided by many municipalities,
several independent utilities, the Palm Beach County
Water Utilities Department (493-6000), or from your own
private well. Telephone service is provided by AT&T
(1-888-757-6500), and other companies offer service
through cable or the Internet. Cable television is offered
by Comcast (1-800-266-2278 or 1-800-COMCAST).
Certain communities may have cable service through a
different provider.

 Voter Registration
     To register, call the Supervisor of Elections Office at
656-6200 (Boca Raton, Delray Beach and The Glades
call 1-866-868-3321) or look for applications at city halls,
banks, public assistance agencies, libraries, driver
license bureaus or post offices.




The Club Managers Association of America Therapeutic Recreation Complex
in John Prince Park offers a pool with access for swimmers in wheelchairs.


Getting Connected
     After you have taken care of business, you might
want to discover more about your community. The
following will be helpful in enjoying some of the benefits
of living in Palm Beach County.




                                   8
Employment
     If you are interested in employment with Palm Beach
County, visit the county home page (www.pbcgov.com), and
put the cursor on “I Want To,” and click on “Apply for a Job,”
or look in The Palm Beach Post or Sun Sentinel. For a list
of major employers in the county, call the Workforce
Alliance, Inc. at 340-1061.

Frequently Asked Questions
    Visit the Palm Beach County Web site at
www.pbcgov.com, and click on “FAQs” on the top right
of the home page to get the answers to many of your
questions about county services. For a list of servic-
es, click on “Departments.”

Libraries
    There are 15 county library locations in Palm Beach
County. Call 233-2600 (Boca Raton, Delray Beach
and The Glades: 1-888-780-4962) to find the branch
nearest you. There might also be a municipal library in
your community.

Palm Beach County Guide to Services
    To receive a free copy of
this service directory which
includes    phone    numbers,
descriptions of services and
Web addresses, call Palm
Beach County Public Affairs at
355-2754.

Parks/Pools/Beaches
     For a pamphlet with a
complete list and map of county
parks, call Parks & Recreation
at 966-6600, and ask for the
“Park Facility Guide,” or visit www.pbcgov.com/parks.
For information on county natural areas and
artificial reef sites, call Palm Beach County
Environmental Resources Management at 233-2400, or
visit www.pbcgov.com/erm.

Tourist Attractions/Arts
   For information on things to do, visit
www.pbcgov.com, put the cursor on “Visitors,” and click
on “Cultural Events Calendar.” Call the Palm Beach


                              9
County Tourist Development Council at 233-3130 for
the pamphlet “Nature & Heritage Attractions,” or
the Cultural Council at 471-2901 for the “Cultural
Calendar.” For information on arts and cultural events,
visit www.palmbeachculture.com.

Web Site
   Visit www.pbcgov.com for a complete index of all
county services, events, tourist attractions and news.

Water Restrictions
    The major source of fresh water for South Florida
is underground aquifers that are replenished by
rainwater soaking down through the soil. Rainfall can




The lawn seating at Sunset Cove Amphitheater in South County Regional
Park can accommodate 3,000 guests.

vary greatly from year to year, and reduced rainfall
means less water is reaching the aquifers. Therefore,
during drought conditions, it is very important to
conserve water and follow water-use restrictions. The
South Florida Water Management District oversees
water resources in the southern half of the state.
For more information, visit www.sfwmd.gov or call
1-800-432-2045. For tips on how to conserve water,
call the Cooperative Extension’s division of Family &
Consumer Sciences at 233-1742.

Hurricanes
     The Atlantic Hurricane Season runs from June 1
through Nov. 30. For up-to-date hurricane information,
visit pbcgov.com or tune in to PBC-TV Channel 20.



                                 10
Telephone Tip
    Dial “1” plus the area code “561” when calling
outside of your region of the county. For example, if
you live in The Glades area (western region), you
must dial “1-561” to call any of the communities in the
eastern portion of the county. If you live in Delray
Beach or Boca Raton (southern region), you must dial
“1-561” to call West Palm Beach (central region) and
any communities in the north (e.g. Jupiter).

Emergency/Helpful Telephone Numbers
• Animal Care & Control: 233-1200 (S. County 276-1344)
• Citizens Service Center (questions): 355-4314
• Code Enforcement: 233-5500
• Community Services: 355-4700
• Cooperative Extension: 233-1700
• Crisis Line: 211, 547-1000, 866-882-2991 or 383-1112
• Elder Help Line: 211
• Engineering Action Center: 684-4018 (toll-free from
  South County and The Glades: 888-808-3121)
• Fire-Rescue Administration: 616-7000




The county’s news program, “On 20,” is cablecast on Channel 20.

•   Life-threatening emergency: 911
•   Mosquito Control Hotline: 642-8775
•   Poison Control Hotline: 1-800-222-1222
•   Public Information (PBC): 355-2754
•   Senior Services: 355-4746
•   Sheriff (non-emergency): 688-3000
•   Human Services: 355-4775
•   Traffic and road information: 511
•   Victim Services 24-hour Hotline: 833-7273
•   Water Utilities 24-hour Emergency Center: 740-4600



                                  11
Hospitals
    The following are hospitals in Palm Beach County
that have 24-hour emergency rooms:
Bethesda Memorial Hospital
2815 S. Seacrest Boulevard, Boynton Beach (737-7733)
Boca Raton Community Hospital
800 Meadows Road, Boca Raton (395-7100)
Columbia Hospital
2201 45th Street, West Palm Beach (842-6141)
Delray Medical Center
5352 Linton Boulevard, Delray Beach (498-4440)
Glades General Hospital
1201 S. Main Street, Belle Glade (996-6571)
Good Samaritan Medical Center
1309 N. Flagler Drive, West Palm Beach (655-5511)
JFK Medical Center
5301 S. Congress Avenue, Atlantis (965-7300)
Jupiter Medical Center
1210 S. Old Dixie Highway, Jupiter (747-2234)
Palm Beach Gardens Medical Center
3360 Burns Road, Palm Beach Gardens (622-1411)
Palms West Hospital
13001 Southern Boulevard, Loxahatchee (798-3300)
St. Mary’s Medical Center
901 45th Street, West Palm Beach (844-6300)
Wellington Regional Medical Center
10101 Forest Hill Boulevard, Wellington (798-8500)
West Boca Medical Center
21644 State Road 7, Boca Raton (488-8000)
West Palm Beach VA Medical Center
7305 N. Military Trail, West Palm Beach (422-8262)




                         12
To view Palm Beach County
 publications online, visit




pbcgov.com


    Put the cursor on
     “Government,”
    and then click on
  “County Publications.”




      When you see
  “County Publications,”
         click on
   any publication title.
               Palm Beach County
            Public Affairs Department
         301 N. Olive Avenue, Suite 1102
          West Palm Beach, FL 33401
           Telephone: (561) 355-2754
              Fax: (561) 355-3819

                     July 2009




           Palm Beach County
     Board of County Commissioners
                Jeff Koons, Chairman
            Burt Aaronson, Vice Chairman
                   Karen T. Marcus
                     Shelley Vana
                  Steven L. Abrams
                 Jess R. Santamaria
                  Priscilla A. Taylor

            County Administrator
                  Robert Weisman

      In accordance with the provisions of the ADA,
this document may be requested in an alternate format.

				
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