In 2012, military spending in the three-county Tampa region accounted for nearly $14 billion in economic output, 141,000 jobs and represented about 7 percent of the economies of Hillsborough, Pinellas and Polk counties, according to the Florida Chamber Foundation.
Tampa TribuneFilter by Source: Chamber Foundation, Chamber of Commerce, Political Operations
Forty three percent of small businesses surveyed by the Florida Chamber of Commerce say their sales are higher than last year, according to the Chamber’s quarterly survey released this week, and 58 percent of small businesses expect the economy to improve over the next 12 months.
This year Florida is fortunate to have its first significant boost in revenue since the start of the great recession and, rightfully, this money should go back to benefit families and small businesses.
The students in Nicole Carpenter’s Photography 1 class at Plant City High School may not have not heard much about the Common Core State Standards. But they do know they are spending more time learning how to think deeper and more critically, even in their art classes.
A sure way the Legislature could quickly give Florida businesses a boost is by eliminating a legal loophole that needlessly drives up worker’s compensation insurance premiums.
Some authorities say closing the prescription drug loophole would save employers $62 million a year. Physician groups discount that claim, but regardless of the amount of the savings, the current situation gouges businesses.
Lawmakers should stop the unjust pricing.
Sadly, Florida is one of the worst states in the country for lawsuits. Florida’s 41st ranking in a national survey leaves us in the bottom 10 in legal climate. Job creators know this and the reality is our current legal climate is an obstacle to growing our economy and creating jobs. Florida shouldn’t be in the bottom 10 of anything.
One of the priorities of new Florida House Speaker Will Weatherford is to phase out pensions for state workers. Taxpayers should hope he succeeds.
This isn’t a question of being chintzy to score points with conservative voters. Growing pension obligations threaten the security of today’s workers and programs while unfairly shifting costs of unknown size to the future.
The high costs and uncertainties of pensions have caused most private companies to drop them in favor of the 401(k) retirement plan. Weatherford wants to shift to that sort of system for new state workers. Existing pension promises would be kept.
But representatives of the Florida Chamber, Associated Industries of Florida, and the National Federation of Independent Businesses all lauded Scott’s proposal.
“Graduating with a large student loan debt deters some young people from going on to college, even though statistics show the value of a degree in lifetime earning potential,” said state Board of Education chairman Gary Chartrand. “The governor’s $10,000 degree challenge is going to make it even more affordable for students in our state.”
Amendment 10, on the November ballot, would provide a much-needed benefit to Florida’s small businesses and provide another economic development tool for local governments to help bring new jobs to their areas. The amendment would allow for a reduction of tangible personal property (TPP) taxes in Florida. These are the taxes businesses pay on most of their property that is not real property (land and buildings). Business pay TPP taxes on machinery, equipment, furniture, computers, signs, supplies and other property. Homeowners do not pay tangible personal property taxes.
The Florida Chamber of Commerce has endorsed John Legg in the Senate District 17 race in Hillsborough and Pasco counties, but didn’t pick a candidate in the Rachel Burgin-Tom Lee primary race in east Hillsborough or the Jeff Brandes-Jim Frishe race in Tampa-St. Petersburg.
The chamber, one of the leading business lobbying groups in Florida, announced 21 endorsements in state Senate races and 50 in House races. All but 12 of the endorsees were Republicans.