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Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Vote NO on 4

Make no mistake about it...although the company I work for makes it clear that I appear to be apolitical, I actually have very strong, varying opinions on many issues. I understand completely the reason behind the policy, and I respect it. As an example last year an agent in my office lost out on a listing because of the bumper sticker on her car. To me, regardless of ones political has nothing to do with their ability to sell houses. In this case, she happens to be a super agent...and that seller missed out on working with a true professional.

With that being said, I think it is safe to share my opinion about Amendment 4 without making any enemies, or breaking any company rules...Also, because this has to do with land-use and development, I believe that with 29 years of experience selling real estate in Florida,  people just might look to me for my opinion. I know myself, when there is something on the ballot that I don't completely understand the ramifications of, I turn to professionals that I respect for their input.

I have read BOTH sides of this issue. Just Google Amendment 4 Florida 2010 and you, too, can read up on the pros and cons.
Here are my reason for voting NO on Amendment 4:

Amendment 4 is a "vote on everything" amendment. Imagine everyday citizens, with no knowledge of certain technical issues such as zoning and comprehensive land-use plans, voting on propositions and making decisions which could have a devastating impact on our state's economy. Tax increases for homeowners, significant job loss, fewer services, and an overall weaker economy. The amendment actually states that it is impossible to estimate costs. Do we really want to vote yes on something that cannot give us an exact cost? Aren't our taxes high enough? This has the ability to impact restaurants, schools--potentially every business and family in the state. 

I urge you to read up on both sides of this important amendment. Please let me know what your opinion is as well. I am interested in hearing from you  about either side!
Thank you, and make it a great day!

The Naples Real Estate Blogger


  1. You sure didn't get your wisdom from an unbiased website like Wikipedia, because some of your arguments are straightour false -- like the ones coming from Ryan Houck and his very "truthful" website from the "Citizens for Lower Taxes and a Stronger Economy." The name alone sounds like special interest trying to deceive citizens. Let's be fair, your job already tells everybody whose side you're on. FAR even took money from the BP oil-spill fund to fight Amendment 4.
    Haven't you guys destroyed Florida enough?

  2. No You won't 'Vote on Everything'. If you are in real estate, you should already know the 'numbers' of homes on the market for sale...add to that another 500,000 planned, not yet built in comprehensive growth plans passed last year, along with a couple billion sq. ft. of commercial, not including what is on the existing market today. We have enough growth approved in comprehensive plans across the State to accomodate 80-100 million people, so why would we need 'more' of what we already have not used or have no need ? If we never make another land-use change, we still have enough unused growth to create jobs, grow new businesses and attract new residents.
    Amendment 4 only applies to land-use changes to comprehensive plans, does not apply to zoning, annexations or variances. DCA Pelham has already stated that they will accomodate the changes in the process if Amendment 4 passes...meaning any technical adjustments issued by the State can be bundled and voted via 1 vote scheduled around a regular election.
    Any other land use changes that may be approved by a local commission would, as well, be voted at the next election.
    The original Growth Management Regulations passed in the mid 80's called for changes to comprehensive plans only twice a year; however, local officials did not adhere to those rules, consequently creating willy-nilly changes that created the overdevelopment we have.
    Amendment 4 will keep campaign funding from influencing local officials decision on land use changes. Vote Yes on 4 to steer Florida's future in the right direction, out of developer-chamber backed politicians hands.

  3. Thanks to Jan and Anonymous for taking the time to comment on my blog post. Both sides always have valid points, and it is a good thing to have intelligent discussions. I appreciate your opinions.

  4. Allow me to quote a recent analysis by Florida TaxWatch which states, "If Amendment 4 will negatively impact the state's economy but also significantly increase costs to local taxpayers and local governments." It went on to report that this would have a devestaing impact on the economy and jobs: It will increase costs to taxpayers through added elections and increased litigation against local governments. Passage of this Amendment 4 would require voter approval on every change to local comprehensive land use plans.

    I think, instead of spending tens of millions, if not hundreds of millions of tax payer dollars annually on expensive elections, why doesn't Floirda invest in early childcare, its youth, education, public safety, better infrastucture, etc etc...Just a thought...FURTHERMORE, any Florida city which has adopted similar approaches to their comprehensive plans [such as St Pete] have ended up spending so much money litigating legal challenges, and losing jobs and growth!

    PLEASE vote NO on Amendment 4!