Florida House Speaker Richard Corcoran recently addressed the complaints from local elected officials about the potential impact of the state constitutional amendment that would increase the homestead exemption by an additional $25,000.
Some local officials are concerned that the amendment, if adopted, would result in a cut to services or a local tax increase.
Leon County Commissioner Bryan Desloge told the Tallahassee Democrat the amendment would hurt services. “This isn’t trim the fat, you are amputating at this point,” said Desloge. “This makes it awfully hard to deliver services.”
And fellow County Commissioner Mary Ann Lindley, in an opinion piece, said the “consequences will include deep and lasting cuts for sidewalks, parks, road maintenance, capital improvement, investments in programs ranging from tourism to public health, affordable housing, jail improvements and other cuts that will hurt our constitutional officers, too.”
While on the Morning Show with Preston Scott, Speaker Corcoran and Scott discussed the homestead exemption issue.
Scott said to Corcoran, “You know that local elected officials are absolutely apoplectic about that. What would you say to city and county commissioners across the state who are sitting there saying okay well then I guess we will have to find another way to get the money?”
Speaker Corcoran replied, “There isn’t one listener… or one voter in Leon county who does not believe for one second there isn’t waste in government. For those who say that, here’s what you should do – put your big boy pants on and go in there and cut the waste in your government and allow those people to have that tax cut.”
Corcoran talked about how under his leadership the House shined a light on waste with regards to spending on economic incentives. And then the Speaker said:
“I guarantee if you put me in charge of any local government’s budget and in 30 days I will find you enough waste where they don’t have to take any kind of cuts on services and sure as heck not have to raise taxes,” said Corcoran.
The homestead exemption amendment is slated to be on the ballot in 2018.