Home Video Everything You Need To Know To Vote On Florida’s 2018 Amendments

Everything You Need To Know To Vote On Florida’s 2018 Amendments

When you go to the polls on November 6th, you will be faced with voting on 12 proposed amendments. You’ll be asked to select a yes, or no, as your vote – it’s just not as easy at it sounds.

Following is a guide to those amendments. Explaining the amendment, and how a yes, or no, vote would affect the outcome.  The list is compiled, and explained, by the “Be Ready To Vote” organization. A short video clip is also available.

Twelve proposed amendments to the Florida Constitution are on the General Election ballot, eight more than appeared on the 2016 ballot. However, voters face more questions than is apparent. (NOTE: Previously 13 amendments were on the ballot; Amendment 8 was struck from the ballot by the Florida Supreme Court)

That’s because Florida’s Constitution Revision Commission (CRC), which convenes every 20 years, is allowed by law to bundle more than one issue into each question. An example of the CRC’s issue bundling in 2018 is Amendment 9, which asks voters to decide whether to ban offshore oil drilling, and whether to ban e-cigarettes at workplaces. Like the CRC’s other bundled amendments, voters cannot cast separate votes on drilling and vaping. These are all-or-nothing propositions.

Of the 12 amendments on this year’s ballot, seven were proposed by the CRC, three by the Florida Legislature and two by citizen initiative. To pass, each of them must receive at least 60 percent approval by voters. Unless otherwise indicated, changes to the Constitution take effect on Jan. 8, 2019.

Below are summaries of each amendment, including the impact of a yes or no vote.

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Amendment 1

Increased Homestead Property Tax Exemption

Grants an additional $25,000 homestead exemption for homes valued over $125,000. Owners of homes worth more than $100,000 would also receive an increase in their exemption.

A YES vote on Amendment 1 would:

  • Allow homeowners to deduct an additional $25,000 from the taxable value of a home worth more than $100,000, starting on Jan. 1, 2019.
  • Exclude local school taxes from the new exemption.
  • Cost Florida’s cities, counties and other taxing authorities an estimated $687.5 million annually, starting in 2019, according to the Florida Association of Counties.
  • Likely result in cuts to services or higher local rates to make up for the revenue losses, or possibly both.

A NO vote on Amendment 1 would:

  • Retain the current homestead tax exemptions, which total $50,000.
  • Have no effect on the amount of tax revenue collected by city and county governments.

Supporters: Unknown

Opponents: Florida Association of Counties; Florida Education Association; Florida League of Cities; Florida Policy Institute; League of Women Voters of Florida; Progress Florida; Southern Poverty Law Center

BeReadyToVoteposted on SouthFloridaReporter.com, Oct. 9, 2018

Video by BeReadyToVote