flamendments.org Collins Center Florida Press Education Services Politifact Floarida
Amendment 2

Amendment 2: Tax Break for Deployed Military Personnel
Should the Legislature provide an added homestead property tax exemption for military service members deployed in the previous year?

Homestead exemptions are reductions in property taxes on taxpayers’ homes. Amendment 2 would require the Legislature to provide an additional homestead property tax exemption for members of the United States military or military reserves, the United States Coast Guard or its reserves, or the Florida National Guard who receive a homestead exemption and were deployed in the previous year on active duty outside the continental United States, Alaska or Hawaii in support of military operations designated by the Legislature.

The exempt amount would be based upon the number of days of active duty service in the previous calendar year.

The state Revenue Estimating Conference (REC) reported that the proposed amendment would have reduced taxes collected by the state by approximately $13 million if the amendment had been in effect in fiscal year 2009-10. According to the REC, approximately 25,525 military personnel who claimed Florida as their home of record were stationed in Iraq in 2008.

Currently, there is no known opposition to the proposed amendment.

At A Glance
Sponsor/Originator: The Florida Legislature

Title on Ballot: Homestead ad valorem tax credit for deployed military personnel

Official Summary: Proposing an amendment to the state Constitution to require the Legislature to provide an additional homestead property tax exemption for members of the United States military or military reserves, the United States Coast Guard or its reserves, or the Florida National Guard who receive a homestead exemption and were deployed in the previous year on active duty outside the continental United States, Alaska or Hawaii in support of military operations designated by the Legislature. The exempt amount will be based upon the number of days in the previous calendar year that the person was deployed. The amendment is scheduled to take effect Jan. 1, 2011.

What it would do: Instruct the Legislature to enact an additional homestead exemption for Florida homeowners on active military service outside the country. The size of the tax break would be based on the amount of time served overseas in the previous year.

Arguments for: Military personnel based overseas are performing important services for our country at considerable sacrifice. This amendment would help compensate them for that service.

Arguments against: Providing an additional exemption to certain property owners would reduce tax collections by hard-pressed local governments.