December 12, 2017

Supermajority for tax hikes proposal clears sole CRC committee [Florida Politics]

This post was last updated on September 10, 2021. As new policies are announced, FPI will update this page.

As Florida’s response to COVID-19 takes front and center, concern grows for low-income families who struggle to take precautions against the spread of the virus. Although Congress has passed the Families First Coronavirus Response Act to address, at least in part,  the public health crisis and economic fallout from COVID-19, many barriers continue to keep struggling families from accessing the assistance they need during the pandemic. As Florida initiates policies implementing the Act and addressing other barriers to the safety net, FPI will update this form. When available, hyperlinks are provided to agency documents or statements that provide greater detail  about the new policy.
On March 22, 2020, FPI and 44 other organizations sent a letter to Governor DeSantis, leadership in the Legislature and agency heads to urge action on 47 specific policy changes to reduce unnecessary barriers for Florida’s safety net programs in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. See the letter here.

A.G. Gancarski of Florida Politics writes:

“A committee of Florida’s Constitution Revision Commission approved a proposal Tuesday to require House and Senate supermajorities before increasing state taxes or fees.

The Finance and Taxation Committee was the only committee stop for the measure, presented by Chair Fred Karlinsky.

Karlinsky, the co-chair of Greenberg Traurig’s Insurance Regulatory and Transactions Practice Group, was a Rick Scott CRC pick — and his remarks were straight out of the governor’s hymnal.

Karlinsky cited ‘seven years of unprecedented growth’ concomitant with tax cuts, before cautioning that a governor and legislature in the future may be less inclined to tax cuts.

With that in mind, the supermajority proposal — as a bulwark against tax hikes.

Karlinsky noted that 14 other states already require a two-thirds mandate in the Legislature to approve tax and fee hikes.

‘This proposal does nothing more than [asking] the Legislature to be very circumspect in making that decision,’ Karlinsky said.

Terry Golden, the policy director of the Florida Policy Institute [emphasis added], spoke in opposition, saying it would make it more difficult to raise revenues when needed, especially considering the state’s ‘lack of investment’ in social services and affordable housing.

The state, Golden said, would be particularly vulnerable to an economic recession if this supermajority were to become part of the Florida Constitution.”

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