The Buzz

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Planes, yachts and tax breaks

15

April

At the same time lawmakers are slashing the state budget, considering laying off dozens of government workers and increasing fees and taxes, they are also pushing a break for the richest Floridians.

A bill moving through the Legislature would cap the sales tax on boats and planes at $25,000. It's being called the Aviation and Maritime Full Employment Act.

"The bill does exactly what the name suggests: It is designed to create jobs and spur economic growth," Rep. Tom Grady said before a House panel voted Tuesday to advance the proposal.

But the move comes as lawmakers have agonized over closing existing sales tax exemptions to help plug a $3 billion budget hole — an exercise that has all but been abandoned.

"It's ridiculous," said Rep. Scott Randolph, D-Orlando. "We're talking about increasing the cost of a driver's license and other fees, and now we're going to hand out tax breaks to those who can afford yachts and planes? People would be outraged." (story here)

[Last modified: Thursday, September 9, 2010 8:36pm]

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