Time For Property Taxes in Florida to Re-Boot

The Florida realty market is showing very strong signs of recovery. The last quarter of 2009 was very brisk, the first quarter of 2010 was very brisk. Two strong quarters or six straight months equals a recovering market. With the first time home buyers tax credit set to expire soon, why can’t the local and state governments do something very smart to get the market booming again.

Why not raise the sales tax in Florida 2% and eliminate property taxes altogether? This will stimulate the realty market, creating huge sums of revenue for Florida from the Doc Stamps on the Deed tax at every closing (Florida charges .70 for every $100 of the sale price to Sellers at closing). The sales tax increase will also make all the tourist pay their share for road wear and tear and it would lower the monthly payment on houses by as much as 25%, making housing more affordable than ever. It would certainly increase non-Florida resident sales for cash paying investors who will only need to pay insurance on those investments.

This will not happen because this type of legislation makes too much sense and our political leaders are stuck in old ways that will not change.



Another Political Rape of America

Well, well, well.  Our political leaders here in Florida are once again trying to kill the real estate market and bring tourism down with it.  How? How about installing cameras to traffic lights!  Now, when your car goes through that yellow light, and the rear bumper does not quite pass the white line before the light turns red, you can get a nice $250 ticket in the mail!  1984 has hit Tampa Bay in 2010.  What is next? Radar detectors to clock speeders going 56 in a 55 zone? 

Why do we need those cameras?  I’ll tell you why.  Because when the real estate boom took off, municipalities raked in hundreds of millions of dollars statewide by increasing property taxes each time a property was sold the county was more than willing to double and triple the tax on that home.  Found money,  money that just HAD to be spent and not saved by our elected officials! And what did they do with all of that revenue? SPENT IT LIKE A BUNCH OF DRUNKEN SAILORS ON LEAVE IN VIETNAM IN THE 1970’s.  Now that the process is in reverse, and out irresponsible local government spent all of the money, they are in a total panic amidst all of the shortages of money on the projected spending that was proposed years in advance.

How do they fix it? Pay cuts? benefit cuts? County or city layoffs?  NO, NO, NO!  They install those little cameras so the poor guy looking for a job that had to get money from his couch to pay for his gas can get clipped for $250 for doing what 99% of America does daily.

WHY during good times can’t our local governments SAVE SOME MONEY for darker times like the rest of us have to?  When my money gets short I just can make up a new tax or install a camera somewhere so I can what amounts to is steal from citizens.  This type of rape of America is what is going to cause most incumbents to lose out on re-election.  America is tired of this nickel and dime tax and ticket fiasco.  Add this to our new President who is not offering enough tax breaks to small business and you have an America that is getting weaker and weaker.  What used to be a government for the people is now turning into a “people for the government” and history has shown where that can lead.

I hope the political agenda of out local, state and national changes before America decides to change it for them.  The PEOPLE NEED A BREAK, not more fees and certainly not tickets and taxes.