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Four amendments on 2010 Florida ballot

By George LiMieux

Last week, Florida’s Secretary of State Kurt Browning certified four amendments for the 2010 General Election Ballot.

Amendment 1: Repeal of Public Campaign Financing Requirement.  Sponsored by the Florida Legislature – Proposes the repeal of public financing of candidates who agree to campaign spending limits for elective statewide office.

Amendment 2: Homestead Ad Valorem Tax Credit for Deployed Military Personnel.  Sponsored by the Florida Legislature – Proposes an amendment to the State Constitution to require the Legislature to provide an additional homestead property tax exemption by law for members of the United States military or military reserves, the United States Coast Guard or its reserves, and the Florida National Guard, who receive a homestead exemption and were deployed in the previous year on active duty outside the United States.

Amendment 3: Property Tax Limit for Non-Homestead Property; Additional Homestead Exemption for New Homestead Owners.  Sponsored by the Florida Legislature – This proposed amendment reduces the maximum annual increase in the assessed values of non-homestead properties to five percent (from 10 percent) annually. This amendment also requires the Legislature to provide an additional homestead exemption for persons who have not owned a principal residence during the preceding eight years. Under the exemption, 25 percent of the just value of a first-time homestead, up to $100,000, will be exempt from property taxes. For more information on this amendment, check out our legislative re-cap edition.

Amendment 4: Referenda Required for Adoption and Amendment of Local Government Comprehensive Land Use Plans.  Sponsored by Hometown Democracy, Inc., the amendment requires that before a local government may adopt a new comprehensive land use plan, or amend a comprehensive land use plan, the proposed plan or amendment shall be subject to vote of the electors of the local government by referendum, following preparation by the local planning agency, consideration by the governing body, and notice. Click here to read more on this topic, recently covered in Issue 61 of the LeMieux Report.

Bonus News: As predicted by the LeMieux Report, the Florida Supreme Court struck down the signature revocation law last week, a measure passed during the 2008 Legislative Session that allowed opposing organizations to contact voters to revoke their signatures from a ballot petition.

Amendments must be approved by 60 percent of Florida voters to become part of the State Constitution. There is still plenty of time for more proposed amendments to gain access through legislative action, or by petition, but as the highly controversial Hometown Democracy debate shows us – be sure before you sign!

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Posted by admin on Jun 30 2009. Filed under Business, Tallahassee. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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