Florida’s natural resources are critical not only for driving tourism and the state economy, but also for maintaining biodiversity in the face of growing threats to the environment. In recent years, Florida has fallen behind in providing adequate resources for a range of investments in the environment, from preserving the state’s coastline to the everyday management of air and water quality. Additionally, as hurricanes continue to increase and become more intense, the state must be able to quickly mobilize a disaster response.
On November 6, Florida voters will decide on Amendment 5, which would make generating resources to preserve the state’s natural resources and respond to disasters much harder. The measure would require a two-thirds (supermajority) vote of the state Legislature to approve any new state revenues, taxes and fees, or to eliminate tax incentives, loopholes and other such expenditures.
Florida currently has the wrong priorities, giving special tax breaks to big corporations while cutting funds for conservation and resource management. Amendment 5 locks in these failed priorities before the state has a chance to recover from deep cuts following the Great Recession and a supermajority requirement would likely require huge funding cuts in the wake of another fiscal crisis. Amendment 5 would unnecessarily restrict investments in Florida’s future.