Budget Survey of 11,3000 Floridians Who Know What Freedom Is
FLORIDA — Governor Desantis’s proposed budget fails to guarantee freedom to working Floridians. Earlier this year, more than 11,300 Floridians from across the political spectrum participated in The People’s Budget Challenge. The survey results show little support for the decades-old priorities of ensuring billions in tax breaks for corporate donors like Florida Power & Light. In fact, the People’s Budget shows bi-partisan support for much needed investments in programs to support affordable housing, public education, and accessible healthcare. With billions of American Rescue Plan dollars as well as hundreds of millions of dollars lost to corporate tax giveaways, there are more than enough resources to ensure these freedoms are guaranteed; yet the Governor’s proposed budget fails to make these investments.
“Right now people in my city are facing an unprecedented housing crisis after Tallahassee cut fifty percent of the state budget for housing assistance, and the Governor blames eviction protections for rent hikes? What kind of sense does that make? asked Cricket Logan, a wastewater mechanic and union member with the City of St. Petersburg. “We pay our taxes, why shouldn’t the biggest corporations and wealthiest Floridians pay theirs? We need our elected leaders to listen to our priorities. We need investment in housing, education and healthcare yesterday.”
“I have worked at McDonald’s for almost three years and as a shift manager, I make just $11.15 an hour, said Cristian Cardona of Orlando. Instead of helping essential workers like me during this devastating health and economic crisis, Florida’s Legislature continues to hand out blank checks to big corporations. This is public money that should go to the needs of our communities who are struggling to survive.”
“Everyday Floridians overwhelmingly carry the burden of paying taxes in our state, while 99% of companies are paying zero corporate income tax, said Representative Angie Nixon (D- Jacksonville). Budgets are all about priorities and Tallahassee is telling working families that the profits of wealthy corporations are more important than residents struggling to pay rent, public schools struggling to pay living wages and families going without access to healthcare. Florida has one of the easiest-to-avoid tax systems in the nation that only exists with the blessings of lawmakers and political donors who have held power in our state for decades. That’s freedom for the elite few, not for all Floridians.”
The People’s Budget Florida is a coalition of unions, community organizations, small business owners, elected officials, and policy experts fighting for a state that works for all of us, not just corporations. The coalition includes the Florida for All Education Fund, Florida Rising, The Florida Policy Institute, The Florida Immigrant Coalition, SEIU, SEIU1199, SEIU-Florida Public Services Union, and others.