2014 Legislative Session Winner: Florida taxpayers

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Chalk up a win for Joe Lunchbucket. The Legislature saw an opportunity in this first budget surplus year in ages to give some back to Florida taxpayers. These breaks come in the form of a rollback in car fees, avoidance of subsidizing sports teams owned by billionaires, and sales tax holidays.

The biggest return to taxpayers may be the annual vehicle registration fee rollback. SB 156 cut these fees to the tune of $400 million, or about $25 per typical motor vehicle, and Gov. Scott promptly signed this into law.

Then, there’s the neglected stuff that we used to do as a state, which taxpayers truly benefit from: bolstering environmental protection, higher education, biomedical research, and programs for kids and cops.

We will see if Florida TaxWatch takes apart this year’s budget with its annual turkey hunt … but my take is that, overall, Florida taxpayers pulled a big win this year.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.