A simple message emerged from Florida TaxWatch on a Monday media call regarding two amendments backed by the Florida Legislature.
No on 1. Yes on 2.
The watchdog group opposes Amendment 1, which would increase the homestead exemption by $25,000 to $125,000, asserting that the proposal penalizes everyone and benefits a few people.
Amendment 2, which would permanently extend a cap of 10 percent on yearly increases of property taxes on parcels and structures without a homestead exemption, is more agreeable, however. TaxWatch supports Amendment 2, which would extend a ten-year-old cap approved by voters by referendum in 2008.
TaxWatch President and CEO Dominic M. Calabro said Amendment 1 was not “real tax reform,” but a “tax shift.”
“Many municipalities and counties are already increasing their millage rates to offset if this amendment should pass,” Calabro warned.
“Homes valued $100,000,” Calabro noted, could even feel a “tax bite.”
Regarding Amendment 2, Calabro noted that if the amendment fails, renters and property owners alike could feel the impact.
“Non-homesteaded property will suddenly be assessed at full market value,” Calabro warned.
“The only way to avoid a massive property tax increase is to vote Yes on Amendment 2,” Calabro said, affirming that the amendment would maintain the status quo.
Amendments require 60 percent support to pass. These both appear to be on track.
Per a Florida Chamber of Commerce poll released earlier this month, Amendment 1 is poised to pass, polling at 60 percent, with the rest opposed or unsure. Amendment 2 has the support of 50 percent of voters surveyed, while another 25 percent plan to vote against the measure and 24 percent remain unsure.