Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce Not Changing Position on Health Tax

The Greater Tallahassee Area Chamber of Commerce is once again not supporting Leon County's proposed health care plan and the half-cent sales tax to support it.

Chamber members met Tuesday afternoon to possibly reconsider their position, but a change of mind couldn't be reached.

Chamber Chairman Bryan Desloge said, "It was by no means a unanimous decision, but the executive board and the full board ultimately decided in a majority that we should vote no against the sales tax, we felt that it's just not the time or the place for this."

Leon County officials say they're not surprised by the Chamber's decision.

Vince Long, Leon County Deputy Administrator, said, "We think this plan is actually one that has the best chances of succeeding for approximately 9,000 people in our community who are uninsured."

Tallahassee Memorial Healthcare's Board of Directors will meet on Wednesday to decide whether it will change its position. The board has said the November ballot is far too crowded for such an important issue, asking for it to be pulled off. The Capital Medical Society and Capital Regional Medical Center have endorsed the county's plan.

Leon County voters will decide in November whether to increase their sales tax by a half cent to support a health care plan for the uninsured. If approved, Leon County would have one of the highest sales taxes in the state at eight percent.