Democratic nominee for governor Jim Davis today unveiled his “Contract with Florida Taxpayers,� promising to reduce property taxes in Florida by $1 billion next year – without cutting funding for schools (roll tape#1 o.q.�the last 6 years�)

In fact, in 1999 the state spent $6.77 billion on day-to-day operations of public schools while local districts spent $4.28 billion. This year, the state will spend a little less than $10 billion dollars, while local districts will now spend $8.36 billion .

Davis says he plans to pay for this property tax cut by reversing some of the Billions in tax cuts that Jeb Bush has done, such as the Inttangible tax, as he told WMNF’s Rob Lorei (roll tape# 2 o.q. “. Property tax owners’)

The Republican Party of Florida doesn’t think much of the Congressman’s plans. Jeff Sadosky is a spokesman for the state GOP (roll tape#3 o.q.� his proposal�)

According to the Miami Herald, in his first year in office, Governor Jeb Bush pushed through a nearly $300 million cut in the tax rate, also known as the ''required local effort'' that lawmakers require school districts to charge in order to draw down state matching funds.

But in 2002, state lawmakers used an overly optimistic estimate for crafting the new state budget, forcing 29 districts to raise their tax rates to make up for the lost revenue.

The Governor tried this year to push thru a cut in local school taxes, but the but the Florida Senate pushed to place the money back into schools, leading to a 9-percent increase in funding this year. Davis says his plan would also help out renters and small business owners (roll tape#4 o.q.�more property taxes�)

Davis Tax property tax cut plan comes on the same day he begins airing television ads throughout the state, and not a day too soon. Over the weekend, a Miami Herald poll showed Davis down by 21 points to Republican challenger Charlie Crist.

But the Florida Democratic Party continues to put a shiny face on what could be another GOP year in Talllahassee. Over the weekend WMNF spoke with South Florida Democratic candidate Debbie Wasserman Schultz, who remainten undeterred despite polls show Davis – and other state wide running Democrats, trailing against Republicans (roll tape# 2 o.q.�to get our message out�)

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