Florida Voters Approve Supermajority Vote on Tax Increases

On November 6, 2018, Florida voters made decisions on three proposed constitutional amendments regarding taxes and:

– rejected an increase to the homestead property tax exemption;

– approved property tax assessment limitations; and

– approved the requirement of a supermajority vote to impose, authorize, or raise state taxes or fees.

Amendment 1, Increased Homestead Property Tax Exemption

Amendment 1 was on the ballot as a legislatively referred constitutional amendment. The measure, had it been approved, would have increased the homestead exemption. That would have been accomplished by exempting the assessed valuation of homestead property greater than $100,000 and up to $125,000 for all levies other than school district levies. The amendment would have taken effect January 1, 2019. The measure was defeated.

Amendment 2, Limitations on Property Tax Assessments

Amendment 2 was also on the ballot as a legislatively referred constitutional amendment. The ballot measure proposes to permanently retain provisions currently in effect. Those provisions limit property tax assessment increases on specified non-homestead real property, except for school district taxes, to 10% each year. The amendment eliminates the scheduled repeal of such provisions in 2019 and takes effect January 1, 2019. The measure was approved.

Amendment 5, Supermajority Vote Required to Impose, Authorize, or Raise State Taxes or Fees

Amendment 5 was also on the ballot as a legislatively referred constitutional amendment. The ballot measure proposes to prohibit the legislature from imposing, authorizing, or raising a state tax or fee except through legislation approved by a two-thirds vote of each house. Amendment 5 would also require that a bill enacting a new or increasing an existing tax or fee contain no other subject.

The proposal does not authorize a state tax or fee otherwise prohibited by the Constitution. Moreover, it does not apply to fees or taxes imposed or authorized to be imposed by a:

– county;

– municipality;

– school board; or

– special district.

The measure was approved.

Amendments, Florida Division of Elections, November 6, 2018

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