In Florida, Tax Collectors are independent constitutional officers duly elected from their counties of residence by their fellow citizens and taxpayers. It is this independence coupled with the fact that Tax Collectors deal with a variety of duties and responsibilities and provide a myriad of important public services, that allows them to exercise valuable leadership roles in Florida's government.
The elected county office of Tax Collector in Florida was established in the 1885 State Constitution based on the ideas that local taxes could best be collected at the local level and, by being an elected office, the Tax Collector would be more responsible to the needs of the community from which he was elected.
Along with their own local involvement in personnel and financial management matters, Tax Collectors participate in the management of the executive branches of state government which include the Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, the Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles and the Department of Revenue.
It is the Tax Collector who sees all these departments as a whole and, consequently, is able to coordinate and analyze the impact they have collectively. Staff members from various departments of state along with state legislatures should and do draw heavily on the broad base of knowledge accumulated by the Tax Collectors in drafting tax legislation and establishing rules and regulations for carrying out the laws regarding the collection of taxes.