Title: Both Sides of Water Tax Plan Studied
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/WL00002121/00001
 Material Information
Title: Both Sides of Water Tax Plan Studied
Physical Description: Book
Language: English
Publisher: Sarasota Herold-Tribune
Spatial Coverage: North America -- United States of America -- Florida
Abstract: Both Sides of Water Tax Plan Studied, Feb 19, 1976
General Note: Box 10, Folder 2 ( SF Taxation, ad valorem tax referendum-SWFWMD-1976 - 1976 ), Item 73
Funding: Digitized by the Legal Technology Institute in the Levin College of Law at the University of Florida.
 Record Information
Bibliographic ID: WL00002121
Volume ID: VID00001
Source Institution: Levin College of Law, University of Florida
Holding Location: Levin College of Law, University of Florida
Rights Management: All rights reserved by the source institution and holding location.

Full Text

2-B-Sarasota Herald-Tribune Thurs., Feb. 19196 Chamber Of Commerce Meeting

C9B1 H Both Sides Of

By PAT WOODCOCK According to Vergara, it He is
Herald-Tribune Reporter was the Legislature's decision dropping
CHARUOTE Some pros to modify boundaries of the from 13
Sand cons of a state onstit- SWFWMD and the Central combined
Stlonal amendment concerning and Southern Flood Control SWFWM)
taxation for water manage- District and to create three basin be
ment, which will be voted on new districts ina the northern Increase
I March 9, surfaced at prt of the state, which led Charlotte
SWednesday morning's coffee to a court ruling that voters maintain
meeting of the Greater must be given an opportunity SWFWMI
Charlotte County Chamber of to approve or reject taxing million t
Commerce. authority for those districts, West
More public discussion of even though the two in ex- clation
the issues surrounding the istence have had taxing power Emil S
amendment will be held Feb. since they were created in pointed
amen194 and 1961. meat I
26, at 8 p.m., In a meeting meant i
co-sponsored by the Central and Southern's millage1
Agricultural Extension and current taxing authority is up part of
Soil Conservation Services. to one mill, while SWFWMD's Ther
Ed Vergara, deputy director is up to of a mill and is a basi
of the Southwest F Ir I each individual river basin ed Verga
of the Southwest Flori board with SWFWMD had of their
Water Management District u ns g the:
(SWFMD), spoke Wedne additional authority up to one he
day in favor of the amend- Ml. the
meant, stating it will preserve This taxing authority is set that the
current taxing authority in to expire Dec. 31, 1976, ac- lower m
exi water management cording to the court ruling, "just we
S and extend that when the modification of Among
authority to new districts these two districts' boundary McQuee
created by the Legislature. lines and the creation of the proval o
Robert N. McQueen, a three new districts now is TI
rancher and a supervisor of scheduled to become ef- manager
Charlotte County's Soll Con. fective. support
servation District, raised Loss of this taxing from the
questions about the amend- authority, Vergara said, could nue fund
ment and presented argu- result in having water entire F
ments both pro and co. management assigned as a porting
As It will appear on the function of a state agency and amounts
ballot, the amendment reads: funded through state taxes. property
"Constitutional Amendment McQueen said the amend- and Sou
Article VII, Section 9. J'o ment as Droposed leaves "too proval
posing an amendment to the many unknowns to be decided would al
State Constitution authorizing later" and ap alternative, to collec
and limiting local taxes for suggested by the Florida takes to
water management purposes Audubon Society, is to defeat manuse
to not more than one mill." the amendment March 9, m age
But as it was approved by have it rewritten to clarify T
the State Legislature, the questions and put It back on amendmi
portion of the amendment the ballot for the Nov. 2 of water
relating to ad valorem general election. grams a
(property) taxation for water In the current 1975-76 fiscal develop
management reads: for year, Charlotte County pro- lohal le
water management purposes perty owners are paying .15 Thate i
for the northwest portion of mills as taxes levied by the funding
the state lying west of the SWFWMD and .20 mills levied funding
line between ranges two and by the Peace River Basin water m
three east 0.05 mill; for water Board. Realtor-developer rejection
management purposes for the Vasco Peoples is the county's ot state
remaining portions of the representative on the basin aofate
state 1.0 mill; and for all board. manager
other special districts a McQueen s concerned Amon
mllage authorized by law whether the concept o having presented
approved by vote of the elec- "localized" basin boards will rjetion
tors who are owners of remain or be discarded f the e:
frecholds therein not wholly water management amend -
exempt from taxation." mest is approved. manage

Selected o
be in the
ad valor
an appoi
taoied as
for gov

Water Tax Plan Studied

also concerned that
the millage cap
as it now is for the
d levies of the
D and its individual
arda to 1 mill may
the current levy in
SCounty in order to
what he said is
D's overall $12-
Carlotte Civic Asso-
representative Dr.
epston, like McQueen,
out that the amend-
poses a different tax
cap on the northwest
's no doubt that this
c inequity," respond-
ra, "but it's a result
local legislators say-
y don't need any I
aes there." He added
line delineating the
village cap is drawn
st of Tallahassee."
the arguments
Presented for ap-
the amendment are:
hat the newer water
aent districts are now
d by appropriations
State general reve-
Sand, in effect, the
lorida public is sup-
their operation. This
to double taxation of
owners within the
D and the Central
ithern District. Ap-
of the amendment
low the new districts
t their own property
support their water
lent programs.
hat passage of the
aet will allow control
r management pro-
nd water resources
ent to remain at the
I, not in Tallahassee.
nale being that If the
forced to assume
responsibility for
management, by voter
of the amendment,
suit in the assertion
authority over water
ig arguments
Sby McQueen for
of the amendment
The several water
lent boards are all
appointees, not
fflcials. It would not
best interest of good
eat to further extend
nm taxing power to
nted board. The ad
tax should be re
Sthe funding source
'rnmental purposes
red by elected ofl$-

taxation allowed would be meant and conservation, but
allocated between the district instead the referendum is
and its separate boards, if the 'confined to finance and taxa-
boards continued in existence, tion. The proposed amend-
"A vote against the ment should be rewritten and
amendment is not a vote submitted to the voters in an
against sound water manage- exact and comprehensive

The water management
districts and authority
granted to them make them
in part a regulatory agency
and state or district
regulatory agencies should
not be financed by local ad
valorem taxes but instead by
state general revenue funds.
Specifically regarding the
SWFWMD and its basin
boards, McQueen points out
that the proposed amendment
does not state how the 1 mil

form at a later date," he said,
in argument for rejection of
the amendment.
McQueen suggested there is
a flaw in the amendment that
could jeopardize tax revenue
for the water districts.







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