Proposed Super Homestead Exemption

By
Real Estate Agent with ERA Suncoast Realty
Here is another follow up on the proposed ammendment as reported by the Citrus County Chronicle on September 29th, 2007. For more up to date information go to www.floridarealtors.org, scroll down the page to 2007 Legislative top initiatives and click on Property-tax-reform toolkit for the most up to date information surrounding the PROPOSED ammendment Wording of referendum must be fixed Sept. 29, 2007 -- A judge ruled Monday that the Florida Legislature’s tax-reduction amendment that was scheduled to appear on the January presidential primary ballot is unconstitutional. The judge’s decision means that unless there are corrective measures taken, voters will not be given the opportunity to vote on the issue. The referendum would give citizens the right to create a “super-exemption” that would provide tax relief to homeowners who have been crushed by rising real estate valuations in Florida. The problem with the referendum is with the ballot language that was approved. Circuit Judge Charles A. Francis of Tallahassee ruled the wording was confusing and inaccurate. While it’s a confusing issue, there is an answer here. There is still plenty of time to rewrite the wording for the referendum and comply with the judge’s interpretation. The Florida Legislature is about to go into a special session, and the time could be set aside to do the rewrite. Gov. Charlie Crist and the legislative leadership made tax reform a key component of their 2006 election. Here’s where the leadership is needed. The governor, Senate president and speaker of the House need to get together, analyze the judge’s ruling, and develop wording on the amendment that fits the judge’s guidelines. The bottom line is that voters should be given the opportunity to control how government spends its money. The current inequities in our property tax system have created a backlash of anguish from homeowners and business people. The amendment is a complicated piece of legislation, but we have confidence that the voters are smart enough to figure it out if it’s presented in a fair way. While we’re not endorsing the change in the tax system at this time, we are endorsing the right of the people to determine their own future. Our elected officials should make the needed changes in the wording and get the referendum back on the January ballot.

Comments (2)

Brady Pevehouse
RE/MAX Downtown - Orlando, FL
Your Orlando Real Estate Professional

Melinda, you are correct, but I am concerned about the time to do the re-write, 

it has to pass through the legislators and then by the judge, or it could go to the judge then the legislature. But we all know the egos that were stepped on during the first writing. If you make it more simple and easier to understand then some people / representatives may not like it, as it may actually cause it to pass.

I personally wished Rubio would have stuc to the complete tax overhaul. The numbers made so much sense via taxation per consumption rather than our unfair current system.

Either way, we all need to work on educating the public what is at hand and what could be lost if something isn't done right away.

Sep 29, 2007 02:46 AM
Rob Arnold
Sand Dollar Realty Group, Inc. - Altamonte Springs, FL
Metro Orlando Full Service - Investor Friendly & F

It is lovely to see these judges legislate from the bench. 

The plaintiff in this case was in south Florida, yet they selectively pick a historically liberal court circuit in Leon County in order to get this ballot language overturned.  The local governments need to be sent a strong message that the people are sick and tired of their runaway spending.

Sep 30, 2007 03:23 AM