Legislature’s Last Minute Appropriations
During last minute budget negotiations on June 15, budget chiefs from both the Florida House and Senate directed millions of the state’s budget into various projects. One of these projects was Enterprise Florida, receiving an additional $19.5 million in funding. Of these funds, $10 million will be allocated to economic development and $8.5 million towards the state marketing campaign. It seems this is always the way it is with Enterprise Florida funding – last minute decisions.
Also in the economic development appropriations package is $21.6 million in funding for the Voluntary Cleanup Tax Credit (VCTC) for the 2015-2016 fiscal year. This funding will eliminate the current backlog for the Brownfields Redevelopment Program. Legislature Passes Tax Package Gov. Scott signed the $400 million tax package on June 16.
Included in the tax package are the following tax exemptions: *
Communication services tax break (cell phone, cable and satellite television services) * Gun club membership fees
* Aviation fuel (schools or training programs of aeronautics or aviation)
* Boat repairs up to $60,000
* College textbooks (July 1, 2015-June 30, 2016)
* College prepaid meal plans (college/university plans and third party plans)
* Motor vehicles (for military personnel returning from overseas)
* Sales tax holiday (August 7-16 for clothing, school supplies, computers and computer accessories)
Rep. Gaetz, Chairman, House Finance & Tax Committee, was heard telling the press that the sales tax exemption for manufacturing machinery and equipment will be a priority of his next year.
Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) More action on TPA this week as the US House once again passed TPA on June 18. The difference this week is that the legislation is a stand-alone item and not tied to the TAA (Trade Adjustment Assistance) portion, which caused controversy in the previous vote. Now TPA will need to be voted on by the Senate to move forward since it is a singular item and not tied to other legislation as before. TPA is an important issue for manufacturers and we are working with all our partners to fight for successful passage. We appreciate all the members and associations who have advocated along with us! Your voice makes a huge statement and we must continue to fight. The discussion is not over and TPA is far from dead. The time to show your support is now!