April 20, 2011

Governor Rick Scott has renewed his call for the legislature to adopt big tax cuts even as billions of dollars are being cut from state programs like education and Medicaid. 

“I remain certain that any budget I sign into law will do the following things: reduce the size and scope of government, reduce the cost of government, and pass those savings on to taxpayers in the form of tax cuts,” Scott said in his weekly radio address.

“The budget proposal I sent to the legislature does those three things. I will not compromise on these principles.”

The “no compromise” talk raises the issue of a possible veto of the state budget, the St. Petersburg Times said.

The tax cuts he wants:  "Business and property tax cuts are critical to make Florida No. 1 in job creation. Lowering taxes will attract businesses and jobs to our state. I am confident that, with your help, the Legislature will make the right decision.”

Scott continues to advocate for a cut in the state corporate income tax, even though Florida’s tax is relatively low and so riddled with loopholes that few companies pay it.  

"Slashing the corporate income tax would do little, if anything, to improve an already business-friendly tax structure or to create jobs," FCFEP said in a February report.  "But it would do much to decrease the level of services necessary to support a decent quality of life, which is the foundation of economic development.  (See "Keeping and Modernizing the Corporate Income Tax Will Best Serve Florida; Corporate Tax Cut Would Force More Service Cuts While Doing Little to Create Jobs.") 

So far, legislative leaders have resisted any pressure to adopt sweeping tax cuts.  A prominent Florida economist suggests that they should continue to do so.

“There is not much room for improvement as far as the tax climate in Florida is concerned and trying to be the cheapest date in the country is not going to bolster the number of suitors Florida has,” writes Dr. Sean Snaith, director of the Institute for Economic Effectiveness at the University of Central Florida.                   

“There is very little to win in our race to the tax bottom,” Snaith said in his quarterly Florida and Metro Forecast.  “Those tax revenues could be used more effectively to grow the economy through investment in infrastructure or education.  These things would be far more attractive to business than a marginal improvement in the business tax climate.”

Comments
Bobby Buccellat
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June 17, 2011 at 15:41
Maybe one day Florida will get tired of always being on the wrong side of history.
Jason Harrell
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July 21, 2011 at 23:39
Corporate taxes are extremely low in Florida. Research shows employers are more interested in infrastructure pand an educated workforce-not marginal tax cuts.
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