Category Archives: Legislative
2013 Rally In Tally
Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Join other concerned Orange County PTA members in bringing the issues and concerns of Florida PTA to Tallahassee. The 2013 Rally in Tally is slated for Wednesday, April 10, 2013. We will be traveling via motor coach to OUR Capitol and make our voices HEARD.
Every child. One voice.
For more information contact Valerie Radcliffe, Rally In Tally, Rally@OCCPTA.org
***Substitutions must be sent to OCCPTA no later than 5pm April 9, 2013**
Please be sure to include payment to ensure seat assignment.
Orange County Council of PTA/PTSAs
Local PTA/PTSA Units Can Educate About & Speak Out Against Amendments 3 and 8!
Among the items on the crowded November ballot are proposed Amendments 3 and Amendment 8 to the Florida Constitution. The Florida PTA and OCCPTA are strongly opposed to both Amendments and are urging all Floridians to “Vote NO on 3 and 8.” Local PTA/PTSA units can and should join this effort, educating their members and speaking out against these Amendments.
Answers to Some Likely Questions from Local Units
Are we (local PTA/PTSA units) allowed to speak out against Amendments 3 and 8?
YES! Again, you can and you should urge everyone to Vote NO on 3 and 8.
But are we allowed to speak out for or against candidates for elected office, such as President or State Representative?
NO. Under no circumstances may local units express support for or opposition to any candidate running for office, or take any action that favors one political candidate or political party over another.
Wait! This is confusing. So we’re allowed to speak out about some issues on the ballot but not others?
Yes. That is correct. You cannot speak out for or against a candidate, but you definitely can speak out against Amendments 3 and 8.
But why are we allowed to speak out about Amendments 3 and 8? What is different about them?
Here’s the situation: your local PTA/PTSA unit is a tax-exempt organization. The IRS treats tax-exempt organizations’ activities related to candidates differently from their activities related to proposed constitutional amendments.
More specifically, although voters will decide the fate of Amendments 3 and 8, the IRS considers efforts to influence voters about them exactly the same as efforts to influence legislators’ decisions about proposed laws. Influencing decisions about proposed laws (including decisions about funding for education) is something that local PTA units do all the time. In short, speaking out against Amendments 3 and 8 is no different than speaking out against proposed cuts to the State education budget.
Why are we focusing only on Amendments 3 and 8?
These are the two Amendments on the November ballot that Florida PTA is opposing. Florida PTA has a formal process for reviewing ballot and legislative proposals, and it bases any support/opposition on its adopted position statements. Find Florida PTA’s adopted positions and read about PTA advocacy here.
What are the limits on our unit’s advocacy about Amendments 3 and 8?
First, there is no limit at all on local PTA units’ efforts to conduct public education about issues, influence public opinion, and/or promote voter participation, provided that their efforts do not conflict with the mission or positions of Florida PTA or National PTA.
Local units are also free to speak out on Amendments 3 and 8 - as well as work to influence legislation throughout the year – without putting their tax-exempt status at-risk, as long as those activities do not absorb a “substantial” portion of the unit’s time or money. Learn more about the relevant IRS rules for tax-exempt organizations here.