Amendment 11: Additional Homestead Exemption ...

Published: Saturday, October 6, 2012 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Sunday, October 7, 2012 at 1:10 a.m.

A look at the constitutional amendments on the Nov. 6 ballot from the League of Women Voters of Florida Education Fund:

Amendment 11: Additional Homestead Exemption; Low-Income Seniors Who Maintain Long-Term Residency on Property; Equal to Assessed Value

Synopsis: : Amendment 11 authorizes cities and counties to grant full homestead property tax relief to low-income seniors who have lived in their home for at least 25 years. In short, it would eliminate the entire property tax bill for qualifying seniors. Homeowners who meet the following requirements would be eligible: 1) aged 65 and older; 2) have a household income of less than $27,030; 3) own a home with a market value of less than $250,000; 4) have lived in the home for at least 25 years. City councils and county commissions must pass the exemption by a supermajority vote before the full exemption can be offered. The state estimates that the tax revenues local governments would lose if Amendment 11 passes, and if every city and county in the state were to approve the exemption, would be a combined $18.5 million over the first two years it was offered.

A vote YES on Amendment 11 would:

- Authorize cities and counties to grant a full homestead exemption to certain low-income seniors

- Require a super-majority vote by local governments to grant the exemption

- Reduce tax revenues to local governments across the state by an estimated $18.5 million combined over the first two years it is implemented

A vote NO on Amendment 11 would:

- Retain current property tax exemptions for seniors

- Prevent local governments from granting an exemption that could cost an estimated $18.5 million in tax revenues combined over the first two years of implementation

- Not place a potential limitation on local government revenue in the Florida Constitution where it would be difficult to modify or remove

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