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Local Control May Be Lost

October 20th, 2007 by Mike Vasilinda

The Republican leadership of the state legislature is on the verge of
violating one of the state GOP’s core principles…local control.
Contained in both the House and Senate versions of the property tax
legislation is an item that Mike Vasilinda tells us would shift the
control over property tax levies from local governments to the state.

Hear it Here: Local Control May Be Lost

The states GOP website very clear. Click on Core Principles and it says
“the most effective government is government closest to the people.”
Yet the GOP led legislature is about to strip all local governments of
their ability to set property tax rates. It has the cities and counties
up in arms. Rebecca O’Hara from the Florida League of Cities says it would be a dramatic change to the constitution. “So essentially what this will do is set a scenario where the
legislature will be making local budget decisions”

Prior to 1968, When the legislature had total control over local
governments the printed Laws of Florida took two feed of bookshelf space, After 1968 they took just six inches.

Until 1968, Lawmakers had virtual control over local governments
including parks and everything else. Charlie Crist is okay with the pre
’68 concept. “and they are going to get to vote on it. The people’s will, will be done.”
Reporter: So that final prevision in the final legislation has the control
“No, no look I am not trying to find ways to make it not happen:, says Crist.

But Democrats may not agree to any tax reform if local government loses
control at the same time. House Democratic Leader Dan Gelber says
“a lot of my members believe that local government ought to be left to
do its business without micromanagement from the state.

But if democrats blink and if the change becomes part of the
constitution, the next time your garbage isn’t picked up, you may have
to call the state capitol.

Voters will have to approve any constitutional change by a margin of 60%.

Posted in Business, Charlie Crist, Legislature, Property Taxes, State Budget, State News | No Comments »

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