Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Proposed Florida Tax Relief Amendment Under Attack

A tax proposal on Florida’s November ballot is causing quite a stir, because opposition feels it is unclear and poorly written, which would confuse voters. If passed, the law would provide an extra property tax break to some homebuyers. However, both labor unions and taxpayer groups are opposing it.

According to the Associated Press, a Tallahassee judge has scheduled a final hearing Thursday in the lawsuit seeking to remove the Amendment from Florida's November ballot.

The proposal, which the Legislature approved last year, would give people who have not owned a home for at least eight years an added — but temporary — homestead exemption on primary residences purchased on or after Jan. 1, 2010.

The Florida AFL-CIO and Jacksonville resident Brian K. Doyle say in their lawsuit that the title and summary are flawed because they don't mention the purchase date.

The plaintiffs also argue the title says the added exemption is for "new homestead owners" and the summary refers to "a first-time homestead" despite the eight-year provision that allows previous homeowners to qualify.

Doyle would not qualify for the tax break and many union members are government employees paid from property taxes that would be cut by the amendment.

In a written response, the state says the title and summary accurately describe the proposal's chief purpose and that the purchase date is the kind of detail not required by law.

Blog Archive