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Property Tax Deal Close

June 1st, 2007 by Mike Vasilinda

     House Speaker Marco Rubio and Senate President Ken Pruitt have agreed on a plan to resolve the major issues involving property tax reform.
     The plan calls for local governments to roll back their property taxes based on a formula of how much they have increased taxes in recent years. Tax growth will also be capped, but local governments could exceed the cap with an extraordinary vote. Future homestead exemptions will be based on a percent of the property’s value.
     Local governments have the most to lose under this plan so Christopher Holley at the Florida Association of Counties says they’re still waiting for details.
     “The concepts that they’re working on are moving in a good direction, so I want to be positive about the work that’s being done,” said Holley. “But the devil is in the details and there are none at this point.”
     The rollback would cover city and county governments, but public schools will not have to reduce taxes.
     House Minority Leader Dan Gelber (D-Miami Beach) also has some concerns about the lack of specifics regarding “the deal.”
     “I am pleased that my colleagues have reached preliminary agreement on delivering property tax relief. However, I remain concerned that there are many other aspects of tax relief that are unaddressed. Unfortunately, there continues to be more questions than answers on the impacts of this tax relief agreement,” said Gelber.
     Several issues remain to be discussed at a June 4th meeting of state lawmakers… including tax relief for low income seniors and affordable housing.
     The special session on property tax reform is scheduled to begin on June 12th.

Full text of the letter outlining the deal: propertytax.pdf

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