From raising the minimum wage, to changing the Florida Primary process: A look at the 6 proposed amendments on 2020 ballot

(WSVN) - The presidential race may be the marquee matchup, but Florida voters will also decide on issues that hit closer to home.

On the ballot are six proposed amendments to the state’s constitution.

Nova Southeastern Unversity Law Professor Richard Grosso: “Don’t treat these as an afterthought.”

First up is Amendment One: Should only U.S. Citizens who are permanent Florida residents be allowed to vote in a Florida election?

While the proposal may sound significant, Grosso says it’s not.

Grosso: “That’s already the law that only United States citizens can vote.”

Amendment Two is a different story.

Grosso: “This would be a meaningful substantive change to the Florida Constitution.”

Amendment Two: Should the Florida minimum wage be gradually raised to $15 per hour?

Right now, the minimum wage in Florida is $8.56.

A YES vote would raise it to $10 in 2021 and add a dollar a year until 2026.

According to Grosso, supporters would argue, “Minimum wage workers are them who are most likely to spend that money again out and fuel the economy with it.”

Grosso: “Opponents say that it will be a burden on business.”

Amendment Three: Should all registered voters be allowed to vote in state primary elections regardless of political party affiliation.

Grosso: “Everybody votes in one primary.”

This means all voters would cast ballots for statewide candidates in the same primary. The top two vote-getters would then face off in the general election.

Grosso: “The proponents say that this amendment would tend to result in more mainstream candidates with broader appeal.”

Those against the amendment would counter the argument.

Grosso: “It would water down and drown out the voting power of minorities.”

Amendment Four: Should all proposed amendments or revisions to the state constitution be approved in two elections instead of one in order to take effect?

Grosso believes it would have been unlikely an initiative like medical marijuana would have passed if this amendment had been in place in 2016.

Grosso: “Amendment Four would severely limit the power of the citizens in Florida to decide what they want in their constitution.”

As for those supporting a YES vote, Grosso said, “The argument is that the constitution should only be amended infrequently.”

Amendment Five and Six both involved property tax breaks.

Amendment Five: Florida residents will have three years to transfer homestead exemption instead of the current two years.

Amendment Six: Should the spouse of a deceased veteran, who suffered from a combat-related disability, continue to receive the homestead property tax discount?

Constitutional amendments in Florida require at least 60% of voter support to pass.

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Florida Division of Elections

Proposed constitutional amendments: https://dos.elections.myflorida.com/Initiatives/

Broward County Supervisor of Elections

Sample ballot: https://www.browardsoe.org/Portals/Broward/Documents/2020Elections/2020-General-Election-Sample-Ballot.pdf

Miami-Dade County Elections Department

Sample ballot:  https://www.miamidade.gov/elections/library/sample-ballots/2020-11-03-general.pdf

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