FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 9, 2019
CONTACT: Amanda Bevis (202) 680-9262
TALLAHASSEE – The Florida Retail Federation (FRF) today launched its “Fairness for Florida” website (fairnessforflorida.com) in support of legislation that will restore the free market and level the playing field for Florida businesses.
Currently, foreign and out-of-state businesses avoid collecting and remitting sales tax to Florida on purchases made by Floridians, putting businesses in Florida at a severe disadvantage. Florida is one of only two states that has not yet modernized its tax system to reflect the changing environment.
“Foreign companies are luring Florida consumers by advertising cheaper prices that don’t account for taxes owed,” said Scott Shalley, President & CEO of the FRF. “This scheme is putting Florida retailers out of business and taking away jobs for Florida families.”
SB 126, sponsored by Sen. Joe Gruters, and HB 159, sponsored by Rep. Chuck Clemons, can fix this problem. This legislation will level the playing field and restore the free market by enforcing the law that businesses must pay these taxes.
“Florida retailers provide jobs for Florida families, support their local communities, and pay state and local taxes,” said Sen. Gruters. “We must ensure that our businesses are able to compete globally and are not hindered by outdated regulations here at home.”
There are more than 270,000 retailers in Florida, and these businesses provide more than 2.7 million jobs for Florida families. It is estimated that one in five jobs in Florida are tied to the retail industry “Florida retailers are competing with one hand tied behind their back,” said Rep. Clemons. “We must restore the free market.”
ABOUT THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.