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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Tax swap would remain on ballot -- for now



Hotly contested ballot initiatives dealing with private school vouchers and a "tax swap" will remain on the statewide ballot if the Florida Supreme Court does not resolve the cases in relatively short order, according to the Department of State.

If the high court upholds circuit court rulings tossing the proposed amendments from the November ballot, the voting would just not be reported as an election result, said spokeswoman Jennifer Krell Davis. "It's much easier to tell a voter the item is no longer on the ballot than it would be to reprint the ballots," she said. "It just makes more practical sense."

The Department of State has an internal deadline of Friday Sept. 5 to certify the ballot, but it is not rigid, Davis said. Oral arguments in both cases are set for Sept. 8.

Mindful of the time crunch, the Supreme Court this afternoon asked the parties to file a response by Monday regarding when the decision has to be rendered "to allow for timely ballot distribution in accordance with all applicable laws."

[Last modified: Wednesday, September 15, 2010 10:08am]


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