$50k business tangible property tax exemption clears House

Historic City News has learned that a constitutional amendment cutting business taxes took a step closer to getting on the November ballot yesterday as the state House overwhelmingly approved the measure; according to a report filed by Gray Rohrer with the Current.

The joint resolution, HJR 1003, received only two negative votes, and its companion in the Senate, SJR 1064, was pulled from remaining committees and is set to be voted on the floor of that chamber next week.

If approved by 60 percent of voters, the amendment would double the $25,000 exemption for businesses paying tangible personal property taxes. Starting in the 2013-2014 fiscal year, local governments would lose more than $20 million in revenue annually, and businesses paying the tax would see the same amount of tax relief.

The measure is favored by Gov. Rick Scott, as well as large- and small-business lobby groups alike.

“This bill is uniquely and specifically tailored to Florida’s smallest businesses, and its passage through the House brings us one step closer to putting money back into the economy,” said Bill Herrle, executive director of the National Federation of Independent Businesses.

The Florida League of Cities and the Florida Association of Counties were originally concerned about the bill. After a provision was added allowing local governments to annually adjust the tax rate on taxable business property, above the $50,000 base amount, the groups approved the measure.

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