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Florida's Services Tax Still Unrepealed

October 15, 1987|Associated Press

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — Frustrated after nearly a month of haggling with Gov. Bob Martinez, legislative leaders abruptly adjourned a second special session Wednesday without acting on the state's controversial services tax.

The decision by lawmakers to leave the landmark $760-million tax on the books, at least for the time being, stifled Martinez's efforts to shed a law that has brought him heavy voter disapproval.

The 5% sales tax on services, pushed through last spring by Martinez and the Democratic leadership, became law July 1. It was applied to a host of previously untouched services such as advertising, legal work, accounting, pest control and yard services and touched off an anti-tax media blitz.

"The House Democrats are the stumbling block in terms of getting something done," the Republican governor charged Wednesday.

Once a champion of the tax, Martinez backed away from it two months ago, first calling for a referendum on the tax and then later calling for its repeal.

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