UPDATE: City Commissioner Matlow, Conservative Groups Announce Opposition to Children Services Council Tax

UPDATE: City Commissioner Matlow, Conservative Groups Announce  Opposition to Children Services Council Tax

Joined by various individuals and groups on Wednesday, Tallahassee City Commissioner Jeremy Matlow announced his opposition to a proposed property tax and the creation of a Children Services Council in Leon County.

The proposal is on the November ballot.

During his opening remarks, Matlow stated “We come together today to announce a coalition- of all different backgrounds, lived experiences and political persuasions. While we may have come to the conclusion based on different beliefs– nevertheless, we all reached the same conclusion– that now is not the time to create a new independent taxing authority to support a Children Services Council.”

Matlow proposed that “the City and County to update their five year strategic plans to include the wellness of our children. We have the ability to fund the needed services directly, with elected oversight and without a tax increase during a pandemic.”

Those opposing the property tax included Leon County Commissioner Bill Proctor, the Network of Entrepreneurs and Business Advocates (NEBA), the Budget Hawks, and the No Blank Check Coalition.

Commissioner Proctor asked that his constituents in District 1 vote against the tax. Proctor, like Matlow, believes that the city and county commissions have the resources to deal with children issues.

Emily Fritz, Chairman of the No Blank Check Coalition, said the taxing and spending authority should stay in the hands of elected officials.

“The Children’s Services Tax is a blank check. There is no plan for how the money will be spent, what the expected results will be, and how to measure the results,” said Fritz.

Russell Price, Chairman of the Budget Hawks, said, “Leon County taxpayers will pay $22 million in taxes this year just from appreciating property values. If passed, the Children’s Service Tax will add $8 million more per year for 12 years. The $30 million increase will impact the poor, the unemployed, and struggling businesses disproportionately. This is the wrong time for the wrong tax.

The proposal is estimated to raise approximately $96 million in taxes on property owners over a 12-year period to fund a council that would administer the proceeds to nonprofit agencies.

By statute, the council will include four elected officials, the administrator of the Department of Children and Families, as well as five citizens nominated by the County Commission and appointed by Governor Ron DeSantis.

Original Report

On Wednesday, September 30th, City Commissioner Jeremy Matlow and two fiscally conservative budget groups will hold a press conference to announce their opposition to the Children Services Council initiative which is on the November ballot.

The press release is provided below.

Leon County Commissioner Bill Proctor has previously stated his opposition to the initiative.

Check back for updates.


37 Responses to "UPDATE: City Commissioner Matlow, Conservative Groups Announce Opposition to Children Services Council Tax"

  1. The CSC may be the greatest fraud since the CRA. Why is Whole Child Leon, which is pushing this thing, in bed with big tobacco? Whole Child Leon has on its board of directors the Southern Group lobbying firm which has as a client Liggett tobacco, the fourth largest tobacco company in the country.

    Tobacco smoke is one of the most toxic substances known to the developing fetus according to the March of Dimes. Whole Child Leon is just like Bryan Desloge. It has no moral compass.

  2. Hey, does anyone know where Marva Preston graduated from College ?

    She says she did, but she does not say where she attended.

    Let us know if you do !



  3. At last count there were about 150 non profit children’s groups in Tallahassee. Of these, with considerable research still needed, about half have budgets totaling about $200MILLION! If there are problems, a Gold Star citizens group, independent of politicians, should be formed to review each and every non profit for effectiveness and give a Gold Star Certification to be proud of and show off. Others would be given challenges on what and how to do things better for our children. Minimal costs

    Leon County is currently ranked 16th in helping children already out of 67 Florida counties. Of the 9 existing CDC,’s ONLY TWO are ranked high than Leon. We must be doing something good and can build upon it.

  4. Here is a thought……….. take all the Money the County and City gives to all the “Nonprofits for Children” and use it to create one actual GOOD Organization for the Children.

  5. OK gang, what are the chances that he knew it was going to fail miserably and is getting ahead of it for cheap political points (which won’t work, at least in my case)?
    Matlow has other plans. I assure you.
    Watch your wallet, and never look a gift horsey in the mouth.

    1. I believe Matlow listened and made his decision on information that was provided to him which was solid and persuasive.

      I believe he thought it was the right thing to do so kudos for him!

    1. The tax is the entity. Voting No = rejecting the tax, he is encouraging folks to do that. Yes he clearly does oppose it.

      1. He still wants the tax $$$ spent as if it were a ‘CSC’ tax. He just wants the city and county to spend it. His vote of ‘no’ in November stops the immediate problem of one ‘bottomless hole’ (CSC) but does not remove it.

  6. Whatever Desloge suggests we should do the exact opposite. He has no moral compass. Desloge says the Children’s Services Council is to benefit children. Really? Or is the real reason to stuff some of that $8 million a year into the pockets of the friends of Mayor Dailey and others?

    If Desloge wanted to help children he would have encouraged Trump sycophants Rick Scott and Ron DeSantis to expand Medicaid when the Federal Government would have paid for 90 percent of the costs. Instead he opposed Medicaid expansion and Florida now has one of the highest rates of uninsured children in the country.

    Black people would be insane to support the Children’s Services Council. Five of the 10 appointments are made by DeSantis who worships at the white supremacy alter of Donald Trump.

    For sure DeSantis doesn’t want black people to vote. With his indifference to controlling the virus, it is increasingly clear that DeSantis doesn’t want black people, who die from COVID-19 at disproportionately high rates, doesn’t want black people to live.

    1. Dr Hollifield… on the white supremacy altar of Donald Trump, that is not true and you know it!

      I believe Andrew Gillum takes the record for the winner for immorality.

      DeSantis wants to have people who have committed crimes pay their fines before they vote. You cannot mold that into not wanting black people to not vote.

      And there is no white supremacy altar for Donald Trump. You need to call out Curtis Richardson for being a card-carrying member of the terrorist organizations Black Lives Matter and Antifa.

      Have a nice day.

      1. Hope, Do not forget Mayor John Marks and his work trip to Israel, to see what he could learn about the economics of that country to help Tallahassee.
        This mess has not changed in over 25 years. You all deserve so much better, but as long as the clowns run the show, it will be the circus that it is!

      1. Lindley is for it she just voted against it the last time because she realized it wasn’t going to pass. She wanted the commission to give a flat fee contribution to it and just made up a six-figure number and Desloge told her that was not going to happen.

        It’s like she had a moment of clear thinking, but then not really.

    2. Dr. Holifield, if you are really a MD. Do you personally have a non profit for the children?. Before Rick Scott left office he signed a bill where seniors ( of all races) were able to tap into Medicaid money towards nursing home or assisted living care, my family benefited from that. Leave it to the go to White Supremacy \racist card. Look at the remarks your Biden guy made, black people are super predators. And the comments about The Proud Boys being a White Supremacy group? The leader is a Black\ Hispanic man. Get your info straight, for someone with a MD behind his name you do not sound very smart or informed.

  7. I feel Proctor’s and Matlow’s opposition is correct and boils down to their knowledge that City and County Commissioners have a long way to go to prove themselves honest enough not to totally misuse the children’s tax for their own nefarious gain leaving nothing but useless crumbs for any childern. You Commissioners are still not clear of the FBI investigation which so far has just nabbed Maddox and his girlfriend.
    More money for you guys? No!!!

  8. Precisely… and it speaks clearly to Mr. Chiles’ criticism of the opposition to this new tax. If you’re truly concerned about children’s “health and education”, then your efforts need to focus on the existing programs/departments that – by your own expressions of concern – are failing.

    We already have a taxpayer funded Public Health System, and we have a taxpayer funded Public Education System as well. Speak to them about their failures, speak to their lack of accountability, speak to their specific ineffective programs and associated funding and management… in short; Speak To Them! Layers of failed bureaucracy upon failed bureaucracy is not the solution.

  9. This is the correct decision by Commissioner Matlow and the others involved. The CSC should not be funded by confiscated earnings. Those who support this organization and its “cause” have every right to write a check to support it. The organization itself should, and does, have every right to hold fundraisers it support of its cause and operations. If it is a good cause that shows beneficial and measurable results, then people will support it of their own volition.

    In these challenging fiscal times, hardworking citizens should not be forced to finance social feel-good pilot programs. History shows that once these types of programs are launched using tax dollars, and all the fanfare and photo ops have concluded… the accountability tapers off, promised benchmarks are not achieved, measurable results are manipulated into a nonsensical but nifty annual PowerPoint presentation, and the tax dollar ask grows exponentially year-by-year.

    Start and grow your “nonprofit” with charitable donations, prove your program efficacy with empirical data and measurable results… and we’ll reassess the possibility of some level of taxpayer support at some later date.

    1. You can oppose this without resulting to anarchy.

      You don’t support law enforcement? I have news for you regarding their funding source. What about their pensions?

      You disagree with Thomas Jefferson about the utility of public schooling for the republic? Or do you just disagree with the implementation? You’re mixing the two issues up so you seem like you have a unique and contrarian opinion on things, which is how you think the Founding Fathers thought — which, by even a high school level analysis of their texts and legislation, they did not.

      That argument (confiscated earnings) necessarily means that government is illegitimate, and can never, ever, morally raise revenue.

      That is an anarchists’ point of view. It is not one that was held by ANY Founding Father.

      If you think the opposition to the Stamp Tax was because it was a Tax, you need to reevaluate your competency on this subject; go back and carefully reread the primary sources on it.

      You are an anarchist LARPing as a patriot.

      For the record, because you’re easy to predict, I oppose this Council and the use of these funds for this purpose.

      See how I did that without questioning the legitimacy of the foundations of government? A radical and anarchist view is easy, lazy, and not well-read.

      1. Nice play on semantics and projection, but I’m comfortable with my patriotism and my position. Have a grate day!

  10. An answer to a prayer!

    This is wonderful and admirable to see someone do the right thing and not the political thing. Good job Jeremy!

  11. Bad decision. This is the best opportunity to spread prosperity to all sectors of our community. We have to take care of our children’s health and education if we want a great city.

    1. Bud, I thought we were already doing that? Aren’t we spending money for a myriad of children and family services at the local level now? Is it not coordinated? Do we need another board with a bureaucracy attached that is answerable to no one?

      If the dollars we are spending now to these organizations are not working….Maybe THAT needs to be addressed.

    2. Hi Bud! I agree there is no higher priority than caring for our community’s children. Commissioner Matlow and I both grew up in households that struggled to provide adequate housing and nutrition. He did not make this decision lightly.

      The question is whether this property tax increase, at this moment in time, with this opaque structure, after so little deliberation is the appropriate mechanism. We would love to work with you on a better way forward for children’s services regardless of the outcome. Best, Ryan

      1. Spare me your sob stories, pal.

        They don’t legitimize or bolster your opinion on this issue. Take that up with your “parents”, not me. You should not be proud of that.

        Matlow can be the first one to write a check or donate revenue from his thumb-on-the-scale successful businesses if he feels this strongly.

        His commission seat, and public policy, is not an appropriate forum to vindicate long standing psychological issues.

    3. “We have to take care of our children’s health and education if we want a great city.”

      Seems like your issues need to be brought to the Health Department and before the School Board. There’s always those pesky little things called “parents” too. As parents, “we” took care of “our” children’s heath and education matters… how about you?

    4. That assumes that our present efforts are failing and that the only option we have is to create another layer of bureaucracy accountable to no one. You cannot vote on the budget, the council members, or a plan. A CSC that is funded through the normal county budgeting process (a dependent CSC) like Duval County would have been a much better option. Instead, the county chose to place an independent CSC with taxing authority on the ballot after being swayed by planning committee who was handpicked by the Our Kids First political action committee. Leon already ranks above 51 other counties including 7 CSC counties. Vote it down and let’s start over.

    5. Sorry Bud but, The CSC is the worse thing to do. Find a better way that actually has Accountability and Transparency. The CSC is a HUGE Boondoggle and Money Grab.

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