South Florida Caribbean Americans, here is your Caribbean American Voters’ Guide for the 2020 general election for Palm Beach County, Florida residents.
Since 2000, the Caribbean American Politically Active Citizens, a group of concerned South Florida taxpayers has endorsed candidates based on feedback from a panel of local Caribbean American political experts, many of whom are attorneys.
We do not accept financial contributions from candidates.
Our goal this election, is to make voter suppression backfire! There are at least 3 ways to do it!
If you have received your mail-in ballot
- Use this Voters’ Guide to help you fill out the ballot.
- Place the completed ballot in the larger Ballot Secrecy Sleeve.
- Sign and date the envelope, or the ballot will be discarded.
- Mail the ballot now. Do not allow the intentional crippling of the US Postal Service to wipe out your vote. The earlier you mail your ballot, the better!
If you do not have your mail-in ballot, request it now. No lines, no waiting!
The deadline to request a mail-in ballot is October 24, 2020. To request your mail-in ballot click below based on the county you reside:
Forward these Voters’ Guides to the taxpayers in your social network!
Together, by voting in record numbers, we can make voter suppression backfire! If you don’t vote now, when will you vote?
Dr. Marcia Magnus
President and Founder
Caribbean American Politically Active Citizens (since 2000)
Caribbean American Voters’ Guide – Palm Beach County, General Elections 2020
President and Vice President
❍ Joseph R. Biden/Kamala D. Harris
Representative in Congress – District 21
❍ Lois Frankel
State Senator – District 31
❍ Lori Berman
State Representative – District 8
❍ Omari Hardy
Clerk of Circuit Court
❍ Joseph Abruzzo
❍ Ric Bradshaw
❍ Anne Gannon
County Commissioner – District 7
❍ Mack Bernard
- Shall Justice Carlos G. Muñiz of the Supreme
Court be retained in office?
Fourth District Court of Appeal
Shall Judge Martha Warner of the Fourth District Court of Appeal be retained in office?
Circuit Judge – 15th Judicial Circuit – Group 16
❍ Jaimie Goodman
Palm Beach Soil and Water Conservation District-Group 2
❍ Ann Marie Sorrell
Palm Beach Soil and Water Conservation District-Group 3
❍ Nicholas Neal
Palm Beach Soil and Water Conservation District-Group 4
❍ Rob Long
- No. 1 Constitutional Amendment
Article VI, Section 2
Citizenship Requirement to Vote in Florida Elections
This amendment provides that only United States Citizens who are at least eighteen years of age, a permanent resident of Florida, and registered to vote, as provided by law, shall be qualified to vote in a Florida election. Because the proposed amendment is not expected to result in any changes to the voter registration process in Florida, it will have no impact on state or local government costs or revenue. Further, it will have no effect on the state’s economy.
Reason: This amendment is likely intended as a scare tactic to immigrant citizens and/or a ploy to make it appear that there is an issue with non-citizens voting in Florida elections. Voters in Florida are already required to be citizens—and this requirement is already in the Constitution.
- No. 2 Constitutional Amendment
Article X, Section 24
Raising Florida’s Minimum Wage
Reason: Raises minimum wage to $10.00 per hour effective September 30th, 2021. Each September 30th thereafter, minimum wage shall increase by $1.00 per hour until the minimum wage reaches $15.00 per hour on September 30th, 2026. From that point forward, future minimum wage increases shall revert to being adjusted annually for inflation starting September 30th, 2027.
State and local government costs will increase to comply with the new minimum wage levels. Additional annual wage costs will be approximately $16 million in 2022, increasing to about $540 million in 2027 and thereafter. Government actions to mitigate these costs are unlikely to produce material savings. Other government costs and revenue impacts, both positive and negative, are not quantifiable.
THIS PROPOSED CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENT IS ESTIMATED TO HAVE A NET NEGATIVE IMPACT ON THE STATE BUDGET. THIS IMPACT MAY RESULT IN HIGHER TAXES OR A LOSS OF GOVERNMENT SERVICES IN ORDER TO MAINTAIN A BALANCED STATE BUDGET AS REQUIRED BY THE CONSTITUTION.
- No. 3 Constitutional Amendment
Article VI, Section 5
All Voters Vote in Primary Elections for State Legislature, Governor, and Cabinet
Allows all registered voters to vote in primaries for state legislature, governor, and cabinet regardless of political party affiliation. All candidates for an office, including party nominated candidates, appear on the same primary ballot. Two highest vote getters advance to general election. If only two candidates qualify, no primary is held and winner is determined in general election. Candidate’s party affiliation may appear on ballot as provided by law. Effective January 1, 2024.
It is probable that the proposed amendment will result in additional local government costs to conduct elections in Florida. The Financial Impact Estimating Conference projects that the combined costs across counties will range from $5.2 million to $5.8 million for each of the first three election cycles occurring in even-numbered years after the amendment’s effective date, with the costs for each of the intervening years dropping to less than $450,000. With respect to state costs for oversight, the additional costs for administering elections are expected to be minimal. Further, there are no revenues linked to voting in Florida. Since there is no impact on state costs or revenues, there will be no impact on the state’s budget. While the proposed amendment will result in an increase in local expenditures, this change is expected to be below the threshold that would produce a statewide economic impact.
Reason: If the amendment passes, the process would allow people registered as non-party affiliates and registered Republicans to vote for or against Democrat candidates in elections for the Legislature, Governor, and Cabinet—-which is likely to favor more Republicans or moderate Democrats (usually non-Black) to win instead of more liberal Democrats (such as Black candidates). If this were in place in 2018, voters would have been forced to choose between DeSantis and Putnam, Andrew Gillum would not have made the ballot for the general election.
- No. 4 Constitutional Amendment
Article XI, Sections 5 and 7
Voter Approval of Constitutional Amendments
Requires all proposed amendments or revisions to the state constitution to be approved by the voters in two elections, instead of one, in order to take effect. The proposal applies the current thresholds for passage to each of the two elections.
It is probable that the proposed amendment will result in additional state and local government costs to conduct elections in Florida. Overall, these costs will vary from election cycle to election cycle depending on the unique circumstances of each ballot and cannot be estimated at this time. The key factors determining cost include the number of amendments appearing for the second time on each ballot and the length of those amendments. Since the maximum state cost is likely less than $1 million per cycle but the impact cannot be discretely quantified, the change to the state’s budget is unknown. Similarly, the economic impact cannot be modelled, although the spending increase is expected to be below the threshold that would produce a statewide economic impact. Because there are no revenues linked to voting in Florida, there will be no impact on government taxes or fees.
THE FINANCIAL IMPACT OF THIS AMENDMENT CANNOT BE DETERMINED DUE TO AMBIGUITIES AND UNCERTAINTIES SURROUNDING THE AMENDMENT’S IMPACT.
Reason: The proposed amendment would require an issue (such as restoration of felons rights) to be on the ballot twice and get 60% of all Floridians to vote “yes” in two separate elections—-takes years and a lot of money—which hurts grassroots initiatives by increasing the amount of effort and money needed to pass a constitutional amendment and makes it more likely that only groups with a lot of money needed to pass a constitutional amendment and makes it more likely that only groups with a lot of money and backing from powerful interests would be able to amend the Florida Constitution.
- No. 5 Constitutional Amendment
Article VII, Section 4 and Article XII
Limitations on Homestead Property Tax Assessments; increased portability period to transfer accrued benefit
In a nutshell, a Homestead Exemption allows you to reduce the amount of your property taxes for the term a house remains your primary residence (also referred to as a Homestead property). Essentially, the Save Our Homes (SOH) law prevents your property taxes on your Homestead property from increasing past a certain percentage each year. This proposed amendment gives a person an additional year, after they sell their Homestead property, to occupy a new home as their primary residence and “port” or transfer a Homestead Exemption (lower property tax rate) with them form one primary residence to another. Proposing an amendment to the State Constitution, effective January 1, 2021, to increase, from 2 years to 3 years, the period of time during which accrued Save-Our-Homes benefits may be transferred from a prior homestead to a new homestead.
Pro: Provides a simple fix to a costly problem that only a certain group of Floridians might face.
Con: Reduces the local government’s tax base (but is only expected to be a very minor impact overall)
- No. 6 Constitutional Amendment
Article VII, Section 6 and Article XII
Ad Valorem Tax Discount for Spouses of Certain Deceased Veterans Who Had Permanent, Combat- Related Disabilities
Provides that the homestead property tax discount for certain veterans with permanent combat-related disabilities carries over to such veteran’s surviving spouse who holds legal or beneficial title to, and who permanently resides on, the homestead property, until he or she remarries or sells or otherwise disposes of the property. The discount may be transferred to a new homestead property of the surviving spouse under certain conditions. The amendment takes effect January 1, 2021.
Pro: Self Explanatory
Cons: Reduces the local government’s tax base
- County Referendum 1
Home Rule Charter Amendment Establishing Independent Inspector General
Shall the County Charter be amended to create an Independent Office of Inspector General who shall, at a minimum, be empowered to perform investigations, audits, reviews and oversight of County and County- funded contracts, programs, and projects for abuse, waste and mismanagement, and provide Inspector General services to other governmental entities, with such office’s appointment, term, powers, duties and responsibilities to be further established by Ordinance?
- County Referendum 2
Charter Amendment Regarding Elections to Fill Mayor or Commission Vacancies During Primary and General Elections
Shall the Charter be amended to require that when the Mayor or member of the County Commission resigns prospectively to run for another office the vacancy will be filled by election during the Primary and General Election rather than by appointment or by subsequent Special Election?
- County Referendum 3
Nonpartisan Election of County Sheriff, Property Appraiser, Tax Collector and Supervisor of
Shall the Charter be amended to require, commencing with the qualifying for and holding of the General Election in 2024, that, contingent on a change to State law, the election of the Sheriff, Property Appraiser, Tax Collector, and Supervisor of Elections be conducted on a nonpartisan basis and that no ballot shall show the party designation of any candidate for those offices?
Photo source: Deposit Photos