Saturday, March 27, 2021

Class Action For Refund of Illegally Collected AFT Tax Dollars Refiled In Leon County

Change of venue for Class Action lawsuit requesting refund of
unlawfully collected AFT tax proceeds

The class action lawsuit requesting a remedy for the over $500 MILLION of illegally collected All for Transportation (AFT) transit tax in Hillsborough County has been refiled in Leon County.

The Florida Department of Revenue, located in Leon County, was always a Defendant in the case. The class action Complaint filed by the Plaintiff in Leon County states that despite pending legal challenges to AFT, the Florida Department of Revenue collected the AFT tax, enforced the AFT tax, charged administrative fees and distributed the tax proceeds minus the admin fees to Hillsborough County.

The Plaintiffs in the class action lawsuit are asking for a refund of all taxes collected under the unlawful AFT transit tax charter amendment.

Saturday, March 20, 2021

Committee Bill Filed to Implement Transparency, Election Safeguard Measures Proposed by Governor DeSantis

We posted here that Governor Ron DeSantis has proposed measures to provide transparency and security measures to safeguard our elections in Florida. 

Some of DeSantis proposals are already included in SB90:

  • Addressing mail ballot drop boxes
  • Measures to prevent ballot harvesting
  • No mass mailing of ballots
  • Mail ballot requests must be made each election year 
  • Signature on mail ballots must match the most recent signature on file.

Now Committee Bill PCB PIE 21-05 has been filed to implement other measures DeSantis proposed. These safeguard measures will ensure transparency in our elections process and reporting:

  • Political parties and candidates cannot be shut out of observing the signature validation process
  • Supervisor of Elections must post over-vote ballots on their website before the canvassing board meets
  • Prohibits the use of private funds for election related expenses, voter education or registration programs (e.g. Zuckerberg grants)
  • Requires real time reporting of voter turn out data by precinct level
  • Supervisor of Elections must report how many ballots requested, how many received and how many left to be counted
  • Mail ballot drop boxes manned by sworn election officials or law enforcement can only be used during the early voting hours of operation and must have video surveillance.
  • $25,000 penalty to the Supervisor of Election (SOE) if any mail ballot drop box is accessible for ballot receipt when early voting is not underway

Monday, March 8, 2021

Rebate Unlawful Transit Tax Dollars, Fix Our Roads First and Do Not Trust AFT

The All for Transportation (AFT) unlawful and egregious 2018 rail tax was thrown out by the Florida Supreme Court. 

Sharon Calvert, co-founder of this blog and No Tax For Tracks, was a guest on Saturday's AM860 BrookeTalksAmerica podcast to talk about the illegal AFT transit tax and where to go from here. Take about 15 minutes to listen as Calvert emphasized the paradigm shifts away from traditional transit and costly rail, the need to fix our roads first and stop another wasteful AFT 2.0 rail tax boondoggle.

Friday, March 5, 2021

Hillsborough County Commissioners: Rebate Illegal AFT Transit Tax with one Hand, Start Launch of AFT 2.0 Transit Tax Hike with Other Hand

 NoTaxForTracks (NTFT) issued a statement last week after the Florida Supreme Court threw out the unconstitutional and unlawful All for Transportation (AFT) transit tax hike in its entirety. NTFT requested that the AFT transit tax dollars illegally collected be given back to the residents of Hillsborough County.  

About $502 Million has been collected since January 1, 2019. The Florida Supreme Court did not issue a remedy for disposition of those funds. Wednesday, the Hillsborough County Commission agreed with NTFT and voted 6-0 to refund the hundreds of millions of AFT dollars back to their constituents. 

The commissioners did that because of what came next. Immediately after voting to refund the unlawfully taken AFT transit tax dollars, the county commissioners voted to start the process for putting AFT 2.0 on the 2022 ballot.