For Immediate Release: July 18, 2016
The state’s leading retail advocate filed suit today to prevent Coral Gables from enforcing the ban, thereby protecting Florida businesses from another attempt to circumvent state laws
TALLAHASSEE, FL – The Florida Retail Federation (FRF), the state’s premier trade association representing retailers for over 75 years, today announced that in response to the City of Coral Gables’ recent decision to enact a local ordinance banning the use of polystyrene products by local businesses, that it has filed suit in Florida’s 11th Judicial Circuit Court for a declaratory judgment and injunction asking the court to declare that this is not a lawful exercise of their authority thereby preventing the city from enforcing their polystyrene ban.
“The City of Coral Gables is another example of a local government believing that the laws of the State of Florida don’t apply to them in spite of the fact that the Florida Legislature passed a law this session that preempted municipalities from passing a local ordinance banning the use of polystyrene,” said FRF President/CEO Randy Miller. “Thousands of our retail members rely on polystyrene as a safe and affordable way to serve and transport food and beverages to their customers, but implementing a patchwork of different ordinances like this, which could change from street to street or block to block, is not only confusing to customers but also difficult for retailers. It is always our hope to work with local governments regarding any concerns they have that could impact retailers, but FRF member businesses have been hit time and again with overreaching and burdensome regulations which requires us to push back on behalf of our members.”
FRF is working with the law firm of Lehtinen Schultz Riedi Catalano de la Fuente, PLLC, based out of Wellington, FL, with lead counsel Dexter Lehtinen. To see a copy of the suit filed, please click HERE.
This local injunction banning polystyrene is just the latest in a series of recent attempts by local governments to circumvent previously established state laws. Some examples include the proposed banning of plastic bags, helium and trying to increase the minimum wage, all have been attempted in the past year and all would adversely impact local businesses and Florida families.
“What local governments don’t realize is that banning these items not only negatively impacts their local businesses, but also impacts their residents by forcing these businesses to find other more costly and potentially less safe materials. This raises the cost of doing business, and possibly forcing these increased costs onto the backs of hardworking families,” said Miller. “These local governments are also putting their local businesses at a competitive disadvantage and encouraging local customers to spend their money in nearby cities, and depriving the local government of the taxes. We hope the City of Coral Gables and the other cities interested in passing local ordinances rethink their decisions and the impacts it would have on their communities.”
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. For more information, visit the FRF website, and follow FRF on Facebook and Twitter.