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Tax Plan Reaction Swift

February 22nd, 2007 by Mike Vasilinda

Many in Tallahassee are questioning if the Tax Reform plan announced yesterday by state House leaders is serious. The plan completely eliminates property taxes for homesteads, but raises the sales tax for everyone. As Mike Vasilinda tells us, advocates for the poor are hoping the dialog is just beginning.

Hear it here:Tax Plan Concerns

A group of retirees from the Villages in Central Florida spent the day touring the state capitol. They don’t know much about the latest plan to ease property taxes. They are willing to listen, but Carol Strutz has some concerns about paying higher sales taxes.

“I’ll tell you what it did in Canada for us. We didn’t buy anything because their sales tax is 25%. So I think as far as tourists are concerned, it’s going to discourage them from buying anything in Florida.”

To lower property taxes, the plan raises the sales tax by two and a half cents. That would mean higher gas prices. So while no one at the capitol says they’re opposed to lower property taxes, many have concerns. Some businesses could end up paying more of the burden after an initial roll back. Democrat Jack Seiler wants more discussion.

“I would like to see a review of all sales tax exemptions. I think it ought to be part of the proposal. Secondly, I’d like to see us look at sales on the internet.” says Seiler.

And the have-nots… say social service workers like Karen Woodall will get hit the hardest “Who are the losers under the plan?” she was asked. “Well, I thing that the entire state of Florida would be losers under this plan.” says Woodall.

The full plan is yet to be reduced to writing, but initially it appears that anyone who depends on property taxes, such as water management districts or large public hospitals, will also suffer if the plan is enacted as explained.

The legislature convenes in less than two weeks and the property tax is expected to the dominant issue of the two month session.

Posted in Legislature, Politics, Property Taxes, State News | 1 Comment »

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