Tax Revelations (2007)

Where did it begin?  In 1992 the people in Florida voted for a 3% cap on assessed values of their residential properties.  The law was written to protect and encourage long-term home ownership.  The percentage used to increase assessments would be either the 3% cap or CPI consumer price index whichever was lower.  The second part of this legislature was the $25,000 homestead exemption.  Other provisions of this legislature included the important fact that once a property was sold the current market value would be used to establish the new assessed value. All of these components work very well and have protected long-term ownership in the state of Florida except for the homestead exemption which is fixed.  If

Today questions of fairness concerning tax burden has been questioned by whom?  It’s certainly isn’t long-term homeowners who have managed their budgets and made sound budget decisions when purchasing their homes.

Today we are experiencing an evolution in economical class structure which is eroding the American middle class tax base.  This is being done by continuously shifting the tax burden to the middle class.  These taxes come in many forms.  For example, Property Insurance premiums, Gas taxes, Health Insurance premiums, and Real Estate property taxes and so on.  Most of our systems of taxation have been systems of progression.  What I mean by this is that those who can afford to pay more should pay more.  A person who can afford a $500,000 house should be able to pay the taxes on that home.  If he or she can’t afford the taxes they should not have purchased the home in the first place.  This applies to individuals as well as investors.  The long-term resident of Florida should not have to carry the tax burden of investors in real estate or commercial entities doing business in this state for profits.  This entire question of tax relief has very little to do with a majority of the long-term homeowners in Florida.  It has everything to do with residential property developers, commercial real estate investors and some recent home owner who purchased their home in the last five years.  Why should the long term homeowners of Florida take on the tax burden for all those investors when we certainly will not share in their profits?  There is always a cost to carry an investment for a period of time; these costs to finance an investment are if built into the future price of that investment.  The people of Florida should not have to pay the costs for those investors.  

My suggestion would be as follows maintain the current system of taxation except for one thing, each year increase the homestead exemption $5000 per year until the maximum homestead exemption of $75,000 is reached.  This would give tax relief to long-term home owners and provide government the opportunity to streamline their budgets over a longer period of time.  The current proposals will increase real-estate speculation. The last thing the state of Florida needs is real estate speculation.  We cannot afford to become another state of California.


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