BRADENTON, Fla. - The powerful Florida Taxation and Budget Reform Commission on Monday approved a sweeping new tax reform measure that swaps school property taxes for an increased sales tax and caps increases in some property assessments.

If passed by voters on Nov. 4, the commission's proposed constitutional amendment would be the state's third major tax reform initiative in less than a year, and rating agency analysts say it has the potential to further stress local and state budgets already hit by lower property assessments, foreclosures, and the downturn in the national economy.

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