CONTACT: GOVERNOR’S PRESS OFFICE
Governor Scott Announces Further Elimination of Business Tax
ORLANDO – At the National Realtors Annual Convention today, Governor Rick Scott announced that he will work to further eliminate the business tax in the upcoming legislative session by raising the exemption threshold to $75,000 in taxable income. This would eliminate the need for another 2,000 small businesses to pay this burdensome tax.
Governor Rick Scott said, “Today, I am proud to announce that in the upcoming legislative session, we will work to further eliminate the business tax for another 2,000 small businesses. Like many Florida families, I want my children and great grandchildren to grow up with even more opportunities than I had. That’s why I’ve worked to make Florida the number one state in the nation for job creation by cutting burdensome regulations and cutting taxes. I’ve made a commitment to the people of Florida to eliminate the business tax over seven years – and over the past two years we have been able to eliminate the tax for more than 75 percent of businesses that fall under it. Everything we do must be tied to helping families get jobs, and eliminating this tax will ensure more small businesses can hire people.”
During Governor Scott’s first year in office, he eliminated the business tax for nearly half of the businesses that were required to pay it by exempting nearly 10,000 small businesses with less than $25,000 in taxable income. Last year, Governor Scott was able to help anther 3,770 small businesses by removing the burden for those with under $50,000 in taxable income. Today, more than 75 percent of total business that fall under the business tax are exempt and able to keep more of their dollars to invest back into their business or their family.
Tom Feeney, President and CEO of the Associated Industries of Florida said, “Governor Scott continues to be a champion for Florida’s business community and is committed to further eliminating the business tax which will help create jobs and economic development opportunities in our state. The Associated Industries of Florida looks forward to working with Governor Scott in the upcoming legislative session to ensure its passage.”
David Hart, Executive Vice President of the Florida Chamber of Commerce said, “To secure Florida’s future, we must have a competitive business climate that encourages businesses here at home to expand and attracts new and growing companies to Florida. While Florida’s business tax climate is ranked fifth best in the nation by the Tax Foundation, Governor Scott’s continued commitment to chip away at this business tax will further build on our state’s healthy economic environment and encourage more entrepreneurs and job-seekers to pursue their dreams in the Sunshine State.”
Bill Herrle, NFIB/Florida Executive Director said, “With the Governor’s initiative, we have a real opportunity to grow jobs and businesses in Florida. Florida business leaders want to grow and hire more employees, but they need the resources. Governor Scott’s plan to let more small businesses keep more of their bottom line will go a long way in making Florida the best place in the world to grow businesses and find a job.”
Rick McAllister, President and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation said, “Florida’s retail community makes a tremendous impact on Florida’s economy every year. It is important that our lawmakers continue to propose policies that will help retailers- both large and small- to prosper in our state. We applaud Governor Scott for his commitment to continue to phase out the business tax.”
John Sebree, Senior Vice President of Public Policy of the Florida Realtors Association said, “We are glad Governor Scott chose our event to unveil his agenda to continue to phase out the business tax. Governor Scott is committed to attracting more businesses to our state and he works every day to make sure new and expanding businesses move here.”
Following Governor Scott’s efforts to decrease taxes and regulations, Florida has experienced an improved business environment, including:
· Florida has seen the largest drop in unemployment in the country since December 2010.
· Florida’s consumer confidence is at a five-year high.
· Florida exports are up 18 percent from a year ago.
· Median home sales prices in Florida this past September were 8.7 percent above September 2010 figures.
· Monthly pending sales of single family homes in Florida are up 54 percen from September 2010.
· Condo sales have increased by 45 percent from September 2010 to August of this year.
· Existing single-family home sales are up 20 percent over that same period.
· One out of every four of all US international home sales are in Florida.
· In September, the Florida construction industry experienced an increase of 4,200 jobs compared to the previous month.
· More people are moving into Florida. Net in-migration has almost doubled from last year alone.
· More than 156,800 private sector jobs have been created here since December 2010, and Florida has experienced positive annual job growth now for 26 consecutive months.
Governor Scott also honored Senior Vice President of Public Policy for the Florida Association of Realtors John Sebree with the “Governor’s Ambassador to Business Award,” for his commitment to business development and willingness to make Florida the most business-friendly state in the nation at today’s event.