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Property Values Fall

August 6th, 2009 by flanews

Statewide property values have fallen by 190 billion dollars. To put that in perspective there is still more than one and a half trillion dollars worth of taxable property in the state. As Whitney Ray tells us, the drop in value is creating a decline in the amount of property tax local governments collect, so many are seeking a millage increase.

Property values have plummeted around the state falling 10.4 percent statewide.
The Florida Association of Counties says the decline is leaving local governments with some tough choices.

“Our members are struggling to try and balance between service reductions and minimal tax adjustments,” said Chris Holley with the Florida Association of Counties.

If local governments raise taxes to make up the difference it will hurt homesteaders the hardest because they’re still paying tax on the same values as last year.

Most of the state’s 67 school districts are seeking an increase to make up an education funding gap left by the legislature. Governor Charlie Crist, who helped pass a property tax cutting amendment in 2008, says local governments should leave taxpayers alone.

“We ought to be lowering property taxes. I know that’s what the people want. It’s what they deserve, that’s why we passed amendment one, That’s why I signed the largest single tax cut in the history in Florida for that reason, so I would encourage local governments to live within their means too,” said Crist.

But living with in their means could mean cutting services, an option conservative blogger Tony O’Donnell has no problem with.

“If property values go down, then the tax you pay on that property should also go down. If services need to be cut then so be it,” said O’Donnell.

But fewer dollars for schools, police and other public services could cause outrage among many who depend on the government.

Posted in Charlie Crist, Economy, Education, Housing, Legislature, State Budget, State News, Taxes | No Comments »

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