The bill providing "super" homestead exemptions - up to $195,000 off $500,000 in home value - just passed the House Policy and Budget Council. It was a strict party line vote. (The Senate committee approved the exemptions in similar fashion)
"You have the choice to vote for the status quo, or you have the choice to vote for relief, to give the voters the choice," said Rep. Dean Cannon, R-Winter Park.
Rep. Jack Seiler, D-Wilton Manors, said the plan is deeply flawed because it leaves a $7-billion hole in education funding over five years, with no written guarantee by the state to cover the difference. And, he noted, for many homeowners the new exemption is not as good a deal as Save Our Homes.
"You're going to have a loss of services, that's the one thing that's certain out of this proposal," Seiler said.
Despite their position on the joint resolution, Democrats supported the bill setting the special election on Jan. 29. Doing so may (or may not) shield them from criticism they denied Floridians the right to weigh in on the plan. Seiler said he voted in hopes that the joint resolution will be improved before the end of the