Latest Florida Chamber of Commerce Poll Shows Floridians Overwhelmingly Support Cell Phone/Cable TV Tax Cut

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: Edie Ousley, 850-521-1231 or 850-251-6261
eousley@flchamber.com

TALLAHASSEE, FL. (June 1 , 2015) – By a margin of nearly five to one, Floridians support cutting taxes on cell phones and cable television, according to the latest Florida Chamber Political Institute (FCPI) poll released today.

“Lowering the cost of living and the cost of doing business through targeted tax reforms is a top priority of the Florida Chamber of Commerce,”  said Marian Johnson, Senior Vice President of the Florida Chamber Political Institute. “Clearly, voters agree with Governor Scott and the Florida Chamber that lowering cell phone and cable TV taxes will put money back into the pockets of Floridians and help make Florida more competitive.”

Of the 605 Florida likely voters polled, more than 70 percent support a reduction in the Communications Service Tax (CST), while 15 percent oppose and only 12 percent were unsure. The CST tax cut is among proposals lawmakers are expected to consider during the June 1-20, 2015 Special Legislative Session.

Right/Wrong Direction and Financial Situation:

With more than 865,000 private-sector jobs created in the last five years, and an unemployment rate at 5.6 percent, the Florida Chamber’s poll also shows Florida voters still believe Florida is headed in the right direction, and that they are financially better off today than a year ago.

  • Right/Wrong Direction: 
    42 percent agree Florida is headed in the right direction. This number remains about the same as 2014 when 43 percent said Florida is headed in the right direction and 41 percent saying wrong direction. (Cross-tabs included)
  • Financial Situation: 
    40 percent of voters believe their financial situation is better today than a year ago – an eight percent jump from this time last year. (Cross-tabs included).

    • Feb/March, 2015– 36 percent better off; 25 percent worse off.
    • Feb/March, 2014 – 28 percent better off; 36 percent worse off.

Top Issues on the Minds of Florida Voters:

While the top three issues continue to be jobs/economy, education and healthcare, there has been significant changes in the numbers.

  • Jobs/Economy
    19 percent of Florida voters cite this as their number one issue – down 10 percent from May 2014.
  • Healthcare
    17 percent of the voters rank this as their number one issue – slightly up from 13 percent in May 2014.
  • Education
    16 percent of likely voters rank education as their top priority – remaining steady from previous polls.
  • Balance the State Budget, Crime and Immigration
    were the other issues selected by Florida voters.

The poll of 605 respondents, conducted on May 14-20, 2015 during live telephone interviews of likely voters, has a margin of error of +/- 4 percent. The sample was drawn from frequent voters and respondents were again screened for voter registration during the interview. The sample was balanced according to all known demographic factors. Sixty-four percent of the respondents were interviewed via landlines and 35 percent via cell numbers. The margin of error for this survey is ±3.5 percent, with a 95 percent confidence level.  This poll was conducted by Florida Chamber Political Institute, a research arm of the Florida Chamber.

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The Florida Chamber of Commerce is the voice of business and the state’s largest federation of employers, chambers of commerce and associations, aggressively representing small and large businesses from every industry and every region. The Florida Chamber works within all branches of government to affect those changes set forth in the annual Florida Business Agenda, and which are seen as critical to secure Florida’s future. The Florida Chamber works closely with its Political Operations and the Florida Chamber Foundation. Visit www.FloridaChamber.com for more information.

Florida Chamber’s Targeted Tax Reforms Will Lower Cost of Living and Cost of Doing Business

As Florida lawmakers prepare for the June 1-20 special legislative session to pass a balanced budget, the Florida Chamber of Commerce is encouraging legislators to also lower the cost of living and the cost of doing business through targeted tax reforms.

“Special session has a lot on the table, including the creation of a state budget and the chance for meaningful healthcare reform,” said David Hart, Executive Vice President of the Florida Chamber of Commerce. “The Florida Chamber is optimistic that the Florida Legislature can work through these items and still pass targeted tax reforms that will put money back in the pockets of Floridians and make Florida even more competitive.”

Driving a fair and equitable tax system is key to attracting and retaining businesses in Florida. Limiting burdensome taxes by enacting smart and targeted tax reforms helps place money back into the pockets of Florida’s families.

For a more competitive Florida, the Florida Chamber supports the following targeted tax reforms:

  • Communications Service Tax (CST) cut,
  • Reducing sales taxes on commercial leases,
  • Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday,
  • Small Business Saturday Tax Holiday,
  • Research and Development tax cuts,
  • Defense contracting tax credit.

    “The Florida legislature has the important responsibility of crafting the state budget during the special session, but also has a great opportunity to reduce taxes for Florida’s families and businesses,” said Dennis Grady, President and CEO of the Chamber of Commerce of the Palm Beaches. “This opportunity can not only put additional money in the pockets of hard working families, but could mean the difference in job creation and business expansion. Our Florida economy is at its best when the legislature returns tax payer dollars to those who could use it the most.”

Florida Chamber members and partners look forward to working with lawmakers during the special session to help ensure targeted tax reforms can further help attract and retain jobs.

Take Action Now

How will targeted tax reforms help your business grow? Share your story by emailing me at cjohnson@flchamber.com.