Florida’s building boom has financial and political pay-off for state’s ruling Republicans

Tax collections from real estate transactions are returning to their pre-recession heights in Florida

Tax collections from real estate transactions are returning to their pre-recession heights in Florida. Graphic by Legislature’s Office of Economic and Demographic Research.

The spread of mega-developments across Florida five years after Gov. Rick Scott sharply reduced growth management laws is yielding both a financial and political pay-off for ruling Republicans.

The wholesale building boom can be traced in state statistics.

Real estate tax collections, a strong barometer of growth, soared 17 percent last year in Florida to $2.1 billion.

That was the highest level in the state since 2006 when these documentary stamp taxes paid on real estate transactions began toppling from a pre-recession high of $4 billion in 2005, a towering mark propelled upward by two straight years of hurricane rebuilding.

The most building permits in a decade also were issued last year in Florida after five years of growth.

The rising tax receipts not only are proof of a rebounding economy, but also helped fuel a state budget that hit $82 billion this year for the first time. That allowed Scott to make good on his re-election promise to give back $1 billion in tax breaks.

Full story on how reduced regulations are spurring runaway growth:    http://bit.ly/1VlNqZT

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