Orange Commission forces through Penny Sales Tax Push despite unanswered questions from members

On Tuesday night, after hours of debate, and almost every special interest in Orlando testifying in favor of it, the Orange County Commission voted in favor of putting the penny sales tax increase on the ballot this November.

The vote was taken as commissioners were still trying to get their questions on the generational tax hike answered. It passed 4-3, with the deciding vote coming from the Mayor who initiated the campaign to begin with over the voices of his colleagues on the dais.

Some of the commissioners tried to do this correctly. They asked the hard questions. They tried to get the proper language from the attorneys on the ballot measure. They pushed for transparency to ensure their constituents would get a fair deal.

But in the end, the cash grab nature of this initiative will be missing safeguards to ensure that the struggling families who require public transit are the ones that will actually get the help.

Let me be clear. You don’t pass a measure with generational implications while members still have questions about where their constituent’s money is going. With further discussion this could have been done right.

But that doesn’t matter to a greedy tourism and hospitality industry.

That doesn’t matter to the opportunistic real estate companies who are price gouging our rent.

Both of those entities were in the room when all of this took place. And tonight, they’ll celebrate.

And now the marketing begins. The political campaigning that will involve commercials that don’t mention a tax, or the fact that it will cost you an extra $391 a year. You’ll see the initiative on TV and radio but it won’t present a clear picture.

This ordinance was forced through when we could have passed it the right way if given more time.

But the only thing that matters is the money they get from you.

And that’s why we have families on the street and the biggest rental crisis we’ve ever seen happening right now.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.