No More Property Tax?

by August 16, 2008 • 7 comments

Not that it is really a debatable issue any longer (at least not now), on the ballot was a tax swap amendment goaled at reducing Florida property tax by up to 40% and substituting the lost revenue with consumption taxes such as an increases sales tax, eliminating sales tax exemptions, and possibly a state income tax.  In order to replace the revenue, the state would likely have to adopt up to a 3% sales tax increase and institute a state income tax, even though Florida, at this time, has no state income tax.

I have mixed feelings about this, it almost seems too radical.  There has been much debate over this issue, Realtors and property owners have very much supported this issue, just as the AARP and the Florida Tax Watch adamantly oppose the issue.  The AARP claim that it would have severely detrimental effects on the public services for the elderly and the Florida Tax Watch opposes any type of tax increase, period.

I’m a little frightened by an increase in sales tax, but then again, most of my purchases are done online, and I could really use a savings in property taxes, as I’m sure, most of you can also.  I mean, when you really break it down, the property owners are actually carrying the weight of the revenue generation – if the property tax swap was to be voted in, the revenue generation would be spread more evenly between all residents. Why should property owners have to shoulder the weight of supporting our schools and public services for the elderly.

Actually, I’m in favor of supporting Amendent 5, oh wait, Florida Circuit Judge John C. Cooper ruled its title and summary misleading and removed it from the November 4th ballot.  Citing that the amendment fails to define how the revenue will be replaced, Judge Cooper said that it is deficient and thereby unsuitable for a vote at this time.  Governor Crist said the state would appeal the decision.

Tell us what you thing about this issue by commenting below.

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1 Wanda Dule August 19, 2008 at 7:06 am

If the property tax could be lowered by raising the sales tax, that would greatly help our revenue stream. The tourists would share in this tax and an increase in the toll during tourist season would help as well. Who can shop with property tax as high as it is. Owning multiple properties doesn’t allow me any extras such as major or minor purchases.
I vote for the amendment even if it is 20% not 40%.

Wanda Duke

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2 Rose West August 21, 2008 at 8:02 pm

I am for it, but I think the property tax should be elimiated altogether. To reduce it by only 40% while increasing sales tax by 3% and tacking on a state income tax seems to me would increase the taxes for the state. Please remember that property taxes increased in some cases 300% in 2006 so to offer to cut them by 40% is almost an insult. I would love to know what the property tax revenues were in 2005 and what they increased to in 2006 over the entire state. Seems to me the whole thing is probably a setup to increase sales tax and get a state income tax, all the while looking like they(the government) are doing us a favor. NOT

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3 Jack Zeiger August 24, 2008 at 9:19 am

I live in Rome,Ga but own a condo in PCB. Recently I used the Bay County tax website to see how much my property tax would be on my home in Rome if it was taxed according to the PC Beach tax guidelines. The assesed value of my home in Rome would be taxed $300-350 LESS if it was in the PC Beach area. I was amazed because when I lived in PC between 1998-2004 I thought the taxes were terrible. That shows how much more we’re taxed here than there. Plus we pay state tax AND our tax assessors have raised our values this year! Still, I would like to see the taxes lower since it would help with the condo expenses.

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4 Melissa Ryan August 25, 2008 at 7:29 am

The property taxes in Florida have become a heavy burden for everyone who was not protected by homestead exemption. If you buy a property and the bank gives the buyer a loan, they base the loan on an affodable payment for the purchaser. When our property appraiser’s office raises our taxes as someone mentioned, 300%, 400% or even 500% in one year, how is a person going to have the ability to pay these excesses taxes. No one can go into a loan situation without knowing how much the payment will be and how much it can increase. With the runaway taxes on real estate in Florida, owners of property have been exposed to a very unfair tax burden. Why should small business owners, 2nd home owners and all other owners of property that are not protected by Homestead exemption pay the excesses taxes? These are the people that supply most of the jobs and the 2nd home and real estate investment owners are the ones that are supporting this community with their investments to supply even more jobs and money for this community. It appears that we have seen a runaway tax system that needs to be corrected. If the caps or limits of increase are always in place so that everyone knows how much their tax bill can increase, then they will be prepared to pay it just like a Homestead Property. I like the idea of a one or two cent sales tax to reduce property tax bills so that everyone shares equally in the cost.

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5 Monica Brooks August 26, 2008 at 9:34 am

Sounds great to me, but why don’t we just do away with the property tax altogether and vote in the FAIR TAX. It would solve most of our problems, especially with the IRS….no more annual tax filings…..nada.

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6 Nick De Stefano September 30, 2008 at 8:13 am

I have been renting in PCB for the past 2 years and have wanted to buy here, but I’m a retiree and very wary of unfair and unaffordable property tax increases, in spite of any homestead exception I may or may not be eligible for. I think the sales tax increase is the way to go.

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7 Hugh September 30, 2008 at 10:59 am

I agree with the sales tax approach. Bay County has the only person in the world that thinks property values have gone up and that person is the tax commissioner.

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