Florida lawmakers move to increase school district's capital projects tax cap
Several Florida school districts have lamented their lack of resources relative to their needs when it comes to construction and maintenance. Some including Hernando and Pasco have turned to local sales taxes, while others such as Miami-Dade have sold bonds to cover their projects.
Two lawmakers have proposed letting school districts raise their local property tax rates closer to the level they could charge back in 2007. The maximum tax rate for capital projects, once at $2 per $1,000 of assessed value, dropped to $1.75 per $1,000 in 2008 and to $1.50 per $1,000 a year later. The cost to districts was in the millions.
Now Sen. Eleanor Sobel, a Democrat and former Broward School Board member, and Rep. Dwayne Taylor, a Volusia Democrat, have filed identical bills seeking to put the rate back at 1.75 mills. Some districts have requested this move, and are likely to back it. The bills have yet to be scheduled for committee debate. Stay tuned.