The House Ways and Means committee superior laws by a 15-7 party-line vote that may impose additional necessities on millage hikes. The invoice moved ahead with a Senate committee poised to take up the identical problem later the identical day.

HB 1195, which might ban localities from elevating property tax and not using a two-thirds vote by the native legislative physique, is being carried by Rep. Sam Garrison.

The invoice would go into impact in July, imposing the supermajority requirement for any millage enhance after this 12 months ought to it change into regulation. Democrat Dianne Hart requested that the efficient date be pushed again to 2026, however Garrison had no real interest in that.

“Floridians are being hit with a one-two punch of elevated property insurance coverage charges and inflation. The very last thing working households want is an unwarranted property tax enhance too. Native governments have the facility to boost property taxes, however they need to solely accomplish that if there’s a clear consensus that it’s completely mandatory,” Garrison mentioned in a ready assertion following the committee’s approval.

“Requiring a supermajority vote ensures this and gives a further layer of safety to Florida’s taxpayers.”

Garrison famous in the course of the listening to that in 2018, voters accepted a constitutional modification requiring a legislative two-thirds supermajority to boost taxes.

“We’ve honored the folks’s will and operated below the constitutional premise that tax will increase ought to solely be thought-about as a final resort and require broad, oftentimes bipartisan consensus. That is in line with our state’s custom of restricted authorities, low taxes and accountable fiscal stewardship,” the Home sponsor mentioned.

Garrison added that his invoice “applies this precept to the areas of native authorities, near the folks, particularly our counties, municipalities and particular districts, by prohibiting a rise within the millage fee from going into impact until and till it’s been accepted by a two-thirds vote of the governing physique authorizing the rise.”

The sponsor famous that he “symbolize(s) native governments for a dwelling” and this invoice is “in opposition to (these) skilled pursuits,” reflecting a “philosophical” perception on his behalf that localities needs to be pressured to dwell below the identical guidelines the Legislature does concerning “burdensome” property tax levies that now “could be raised by a easy majority.”

Garrison additionally prompt the invoice would discourage native governments from elevating property taxes to compensate for a decline in property values, within the occasion of a down cycle for actual property.

The unique submitting of the Clay County Republican’s invoice contemplated a two-thirds vote in a referendum to be held in the course of the Common Election, however that model was withdrawn, and the language now aligns precisely with the Senate product (SB 1322) being carried by Sen. Blaise Ingoglia of Spring Hill.

Garrison’s invoice nonetheless has the State Affairs Committee and the Native Administration, Federal Affairs & Particular Districts Subcommittee forward of it.

Ingoglia’s invoice is up in Group Affairs Monday afternoon, and if it advances from that first cease, it has Finance & Tax subsequent, adopted by Appropriations.

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