At least the BRT has some movement again this year. That is positive even if we don't see anything from it this year.
Gov. Rick Scott kicked off the second week of the 2017 Legislative Session by signing the death penalty fix into law. Days later, the Senate voted 25-15 to approve a bill by Sen. Rob Bradley that shifts the burden of proof in “Stand Your Ground” cases. The House companion has already cleared its first committee, and is awaiting a hearing by the House Judiciary Committee.
In the House, one giveth and one taketh away. One bill that would give telecommunication companies unfettered access to public right-of-way utility poles passed its first committee, while another bill that would cut back on incentives in the private sector (stadium funding) passed its final committee. As well, the state’s revenue estimators didn’t predict winter, but they didn’t exactly predict a sunny spring. All of these issues and a few more are discussed below.
Business Rent Tax Reduction – The Tax on the Tax issue has movement. Your GR team will be there in committee to keep this bill moving forward.
Stair-step Reduction of BRT - House Bill 223, by Larry Ahern stair-steps exemptions from business rent tax over multiple years, starting with first $10,000 in 2018 and increasing $10,000 each year until it reaches $90,000 in 2026. Senate Bill 838, by Keith Perry, is the companion.
Neither bill has moved in either chamber. The House bill is awaiting a hearing in Ways & Means.
Ending the Tax on a Tax - House Bill 463, by Holly Raschein, eliminates the sales tax on the portion of ad valorem taxes paid by a tenant. Senate Bill 704, by Rene Garcia, is the companion. This bill is awaiting a score from the revenue estimating conference.
UPDATE: The Senate bill is on the March 22 Community Affairs Agenda. We will be working with the sponsor to ensure the votes are there to pass this through committee.
One-Cent Reduction in BRT – Senate Bill 484, by Dorothy Hukill, reduces the BRT by one cent. This bill is awaiting a scoring by the revenue estimating conference.
Eliminate BRT for Properties with less than $50,000 in Rent – Senate Bill 820, filed by Travis Hutson, eliminates the BRT for any property for which the total annual rental payment does not exceed $50,000. This bill is awaiting its first hearing in Commerce & Tourism.
Click here to see a full update including updates on Community Redevelopment Agencies, Tax Revenue Predictions, and Stadium Development Legislation.
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