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Trouble For 9 Ballot Proposals, But Homestead Expansion and School Board Term Limits Would Pass

| June 12, 2018

OK with you? A Florida Chamber of Commetrce poll shows voters falling short of supporting a ban on offshore drilling. (Jens Auer)

OK with you? A Florida Chamber of Commetrce poll shows voters falling short of supporting a ban on offshore drilling. (Jens Auer)

Only four of the 13 state constitutional amendments on the November ballot have enough voter support to be enacted, according to a poll from the Florida Chamber of Commerce.


The poll, conducted in late May and early June, showed four amendments with the necessary 60 percent of voter support. They are:

— Amendment 1, which would expand the homestead property-tax exemption. It was placed on the ballot by the Legislature, with the chamber survey showing 67 percent of voters in support, 22 percent opposed and 11 percent undecided.

— Amendment 3, which would require voter approval of gambling expansions in the state, including allowing casinos. The amendment, which was placed on the ballot through a voter petition drive backed by Disney World and the Seminole Tribe of Florida, was supported by 61 percent of voters, with 23 percent opposed and 15 percent undecided.

— Amendment 7, which would require the payment of death benefits when law enforcement officers, paramedics, correctional officers and other “first responders” are killed while performing their official duties. The measure, which came from the Constitution Revision Commission, also would establish a governance system for the 28 state and community colleges and require a supermajority vote by university boards of trustees and the university system’s Board of Governors when raising student fees. It has support from 80 percent of voters, with 7 percent opposed and 13 percent undecided, the poll showed.

— Amendment 8, which would impose an eight-year term limit on school board members. It would also allow an alternative process for approving public schools, including charter schools, rather than by local school boards. It would establish a requirement for teaching civic literacy in public schools. The measure, which came from the Constitution Revision Commission, has support from 75 percent of voters, with 11 percent opposed and 15 percent undecided.

In a memo sent Friday to members of the Chamber of Commerce’s board of directors, Mark Wilson, the organization’s president, noted support and opposition for the 13 amendments will be impacted by media campaigns seeking to sway voter opinion.

“In other words, these numbers will change as November approaches,” Wilson wrote.

He also noted that with the large number of amendments on the Nov. 6 general-election ballot, the most since the 1998 election, “voter fatigue is certainly a concern of ours.” But he also said the survey showed nearly nine of every 10 voters said they planned to vote on the ballot measures.

Some ballot measures fell short of the 60 percent approval requirement but were close in the survey.

Among them was Amendment 9, which would ban offshore oil drilling and vaping in workplaces and restaurants. It was supported by 55 percent of voters, with 31 percent in opposition and 14 percent undecided.

Also, Amendment 12, which would establish a new ethics standard for public officials and impose a six-year lobbying ban on state elected officials, state agency heads and local elected officials, had support from 55 percent of voters, with 18 percent in opposition and 27 percent undecided.

Among the measures with the lowest voter support was Amendment 4, which would restore voting rights to ex-felons who have served their sentences. The measure, which was the result of a petition drive, had support from 40 percent of the voters, with 17 percent opposed. However, 43 percent of the voters said they were undecided, showing there is room for supporters of the measure to persuade voters to back it.

Only 34 percent of voters supported Amendment 5, which came from the Legislature and would require a supermajority vote by the state House and Senate when enacting taxes or fees. Some 36 percent of the voters were in opposition, with 30 percent undecided, the poll showed.

Another measure that would ban greyhound racing in the state had 47 percent support from the voters, with 36 percent in opposition and 17 percent undecided. Amendment 13, which came from the Constitution Revision Commission, is being contested in court by groups that support dog racing.

The Florida Chamber of Commerce poll was conducted by Cherry Communications between May 25 and June 2. Some 605 “likely” voters were polled, including 249 Democrats. 237 Republicans and 119 others. The margin of error was 4 percentage points.

–Lloyd Dunkelberger, News Service of Florida

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7 Responses for “Trouble For 9 Ballot Proposals, But Homestead Expansion and School Board Term Limits Would Pass”

  1. Just The Truth says:

    VOTE YES ON 13, END THE CRUEL AND INHUMANE GREYHOUND RACING.

  2. Tyler says:

    It is still WAY to early to tell anything… these polls mean nothing as of now

  3. RP says:

    Better get out there and vote people especially against that oil drilling, we have no oil drillers in florida so theres no benefit to our economy or current workforce as far as jobs go they will most likely be flown in from Texas.

    What not funny is the way they package these, so if we don’t want offshore drilling we cannot vape, so if we want to vape then we have to let them drill and pollute.

    Those should be separate issues look at the way they packaged them.

    Man our government takes us for idiots and all we do is follow along. Wash Rinse Repeat.

    If i won the lottery I would be a ex-pat the next day.

  4. Grey2k says:

    AGREED 1000% Horse racing as well.

    The animals that have NO voices are the ones suffering for greed. Cocaine is now widely used in greyhound racing as well, and concoctions of pain killers in race horses.

    PLEASE SHOW YOUR SUPPORT: GREY2K http://www.grey2kusa.org

  5. Anonymous says:

    AMEN

  6. Coyote says:

    @RP – The ‘packaging’ of non-related proposals was intentional by the Florida Constitution Revision Commission. When called upon it, their response was basically 1) It’s been done before and 2) SO what? You can’t stop us. Of course, the idea is to get the voters to allow (or deny) something they want ALONG with something not-so-good.

    It’s not the only multiple subject item on the ballot, either.

    People .. go to http://dos.elections.myflorida.com/initiatives/

    Make sure you select ‘2018’ from the year box, and check the ‘Made Ballot’ box, then click the ‘Run Query’ box. Read the full descriptions, and THINK about what they are trying to push through. There are a LOT of multi-subject items, and voting ‘Yes’ for the subject you like may have totally disagreeable consequences for the ‘other’ half of the initiative.

  7. GY Presley says:

    Vote Yes on 13. Put an end go this animal cruelty.

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