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Tallahassee hypocrites strike again

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By The Staff

THE ISSUE: State interferes with local authority.

OUR OPINION: Put restrictions on your own spending.

One of the most aggravating things about dealing with politicians is they are sometimes asking for us to “do as they say, not as they do.”

A perfect example is playing out in Tallahassee right now. The Republican controlled Florida Legislature is constantly complaining that the federal government — under the last administration — was always trying to tell them what to do.

They hated that. In fact, they rejected billions of dollars in Medicaid funding for Florida because they didn’t like the restrictions the feds put on the money.

That’s all fine and good — until the same members of the Florida Legislature turn around and do exactly what they accuse the federal government of doing. State government is constantly trying to tell local government how to do their business.

A perfect example is a current Florida House bill that would rein in how local governments are allowed to tax local citizens. State leaders are trying to tell local governments — like the Citrus County Commission — they must spend most of their reserves before they consider raising local property taxes.

Be reminded it was a low reserve fund that pushed Citrus County into a crisis a few years back when Duke Energy suddenly closed down the nuke plant and then refused to pay its property tax bill. County taxes were hiked 18 percent in one year because the commission had failed to build up its reserve accounts.

Citrus County citizens were angry with the increase and threw most of the politicians out of office.

Now our commissioners have done a good job of building back up the reserves so that when another crisis comes along, they will be able to withstand it without a huge tax increase.

The deep thinkers in Tallahassee believe they have a better idea and want to restrict the conservative fiscal policy.

That’s just dumb. And it’s a power reach that should be rejected by the majority in Tallahassee.

State legislators don’t spend local tax dollars. That’s why they always want to create spending restrictions on the other guy. If our state politicians want to slow spending, we would urge them to place the restrictions on themselves.

You don’t want the federal government interfering with the state spending decisions, so why don’t you practice what you preach and stay the heck out of local government’s spending decisions.

The world would be a better place.