Q: Can you give us an update on the proposal to add to Florida’s homestead exemption?
A: This November, on the ballot will be an opportunity for all Floridians to vote for an additional $25,000 of homestead exemption. The primary personal exemption in Florida is the homestead exemption, which is currently a $50,000 reduction in assessed value that is granted to Florida resident property owners who live in their house as a primary residence as of Jan. 1 of each year and whole file by March 1.

Q: How will the proposed additional exemption work?
A: For assessed property values of $0 to $25,000, the exemption applies to all millage rates. For property values of $25,000 to $50,000, there currently is and will continue to be no exemption. The next band, for properties valued between $50,000 – $75,000, the exemption applies and continues to be applied to all millages except schools. The proposed new exemption will continue as follows: for properties valued between $75,000 – $100,000, there is no exemption and then for properties valued between $100,000 – $125,000, the third band would apply to all millages except schools. If your home’s value falls between any of these bands with exemptions, you’d receive a pro-rata exemption.

Q: How many properties in St. Johns County would be affected if voters approve the ballot measure in November?
A: In St. Johns County, there are just over 66,000 parcels with homestead exemption and approximately 56,000 would be affected by the homestead exemption increase. Therefore, about 10,000 parcels would not get a benefit if the measure passed.

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Q: How would this affect county revenue?
A: Based on current numbers, this would reduce the county’s taxable value by approximately $1.3 billion, which represents a decrease in taxable revenues of about $9.3 million. It’s important to note that this would not reduce the total revenue to the county, but would reduce the rate of growth of revenues.

Q: What else can you share with us?
A: If passed, the additional homestead would be into effect for the 2019 tax year (that is, on the November 2019 tax bill). If a person already has homestead filed, they do not need to do anything; the additional homestead would automatically be applied. Finally, if an individual property owner would like to see how the proposed increase in homestead exemption would affect their tax bill, they can go to our website, www.sjcpa.us, and click on the “Stay Informed” tab and enter their address. The website’s calculator will give the updated amounts.

Q: What is the best way for our readers to contact you?
A: Our office is located at 4030 Lewis Speedway Ste. 203, (904) 827-5500. It is open Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m. Also, readers can email me at Eddie@sjcpa.us or call me at (904) 827-5500.

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