Policy & Transportation Digest

Fight for Tourism continues

Industry experts continue to talk about the need for tourism dollars in Florida.  A recent move by the Florida House will reduce Visit Florida and make it difficult for the agency to continue to promote the state’s tourism industry.

The Chamber supports the funding of Visit Florida

See what a Chamber member and small business owner is saying about how important Visit Florida is to her business.

Tampa Hillsborough Expressway Authority releases Economic Impact Report

THEA released a recent report that says the agency has generated $1.2 billion in local and state gross domestic product and a combined 13,200 jobs.

 

This week in Tallahassee:

Moffitt funding:

The Senate Regulated Industries Committee passed SB 662 sponsored by Senator Dana Young* unanimously.  The bill has two more committee stops in the Senate before being heard by the entire Senate.

As the legislative session progresses in Tallahassee, there are several important issues and bills that are currently not easily moving through the process, and this includes the House version of the bill, HB 651 sponsored by Representative Jamie Grant*.

As a Tampa Bay asset, Moffitt also serves as a health care provider, entrepreneurial leader and economic driver for the state.  With a $2.1 billion annual economic impact, Moffitt employs more than 5,200 professionals serving more than 53,000 patients with 361,000 outpatients visits annually.

Email your legislators today and tell them you think it is important for HB 651 and SB 662 to advance in both the House and the Senate.

*If your legislator is Senator Dana Young or Representative Jamie Grant, please note they are the bill sponsors.  When sending an email to either Senator Young or Representative Grant, you may want to thank them (you can alter the sample letter in the link) for their leadership in supporting the bill.

Click here and enter your name and home address (click “remember me” if you want to save your information for future calls to action) then hit submit to see a sample letter that you can send immediately.

The Chamber SUPPORTS SB 647/HB 651 as one of the top priorities.

 Regional Transit Authority:

HB 1243 sponsored by Representative Dan Raulerson and SB 1672 sponsored by Senator Jack Latvala, relating to Tampa Bay Area Regional Transportation Authority, changes the size and scope of the Tampa Bay Regional Transportation Authority including a future plan for the agency to create a plan to implement and operate a multimodal transit options throughout the region.

The Chamber’s Transportation Council discussed the legislation and determined the bill does meet the board approved Transportation Guiding Principles.

The Chamber supports SB 1672/HB 1243.

Currently, HB 1243 has passed Transportation & Infrastructure Subcommittee and has three more committee stops.

SB 1672 has passed the Transportation Committee and has two more committee stops.

Ridesharing regulations:

The Senate Insurance and Banking Committee passed an amended SB 340 last week.   The bill will allow for a statewide regulation for ridesharing services. The bill has two more committee stops before being heard by the full Senate.

The House companion bill HB 221 has passed all committee stops and is expected to be heard on the floor of the House soon.

 

As things are changing in Tallahassee, Washington D.C. and here in Hillsborough County, the Tampa Chamber is watching those issues that are important to the community and your business. Here is some of what we are watching:

  • Possible changes to the Affordable Health Care Act
  • Possible changes with the relations between the U.S. and Cuba
  • Appropriations request rule changes in Tallahassee
  • Medical Marijuana and what that means to Tampa Bay
  • Workers’ Comp. Rate
  • Premium Transit Study
  • Regional MPO

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Policy & Transportation Digest

Florida House and Senate begin to talk about health care

Despite the ongoing debate in Washington, the Florida House and Senate are looking at a series of bills and ideas that they hope will offset some of the state Medicaid cost.

Governor continues fight for tourism dollars

This week Governor Rick Scott released a video that takes aim at the Florida House who voted to eliminate Enterprise Florida and drastically cut Visit Florida

 

This week in Tallahassee:

Economic Incentives:

Last week, the Florida House passed two bills that will 1.  Eliminate Enterprise Florida and all economic incentives that attract new businesses to Florida. 2.  Reduce the scope and power of Visit Florida.

The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce supports both Enterprise Florida and Visit Florida.  We believe there is still time for a thoughtful and productive discussion between the Florida House and Florida Senate that will allow for changes that create transparency without a complete elimination and/or the ability to function in a competitive environment.

The conversation between the House and Senate must begin today and continue until a reasonable solution is found.  Reach out to your Representative and Senator now and tell them that you want and expect them to find a solution that is fair and productive for a stronger Florida

Currently, there is no Senate companion bill.

The Chamber OPPOSED HB 7005.

The Florida House also approved HB 0009 which drastically weakens the capacity of Visit Florida, the state’s tourism marketing agency.

Currently, there is no Senate companion bill.

The Chamber OPPOSSED HB 0009

If you would like to encourage your State Representative and State Senator to continue the conversation regarding incentives and tourism, please click here to send them an email. 


Public Transportation Commission:

The House Transportation & Infrastructure Subcommittee unanimously passed HB 647, a local bill that will eliminate the Hillsborough County Public Transportation Commission.  The bill has one more committee stops before being heard on the floor of the Florida House.

The Chamber SUPPORTS HB 647


Ridesharing regulations:

The Senate Insurance and Banking Committee passed an amended SB 340 this week.   The bill will allow for a statewide regulation for ridesharing services. A strike all amendment was offered by the bill sponsor, Senator Jeff Brandes, which would allow the bill to allow seaports to impose pickup fees on rideshare drivers when picking up or dropping riders from ports, as long as they do not exceed what that particular port is charging taxicab companies to pay.  A second amendment offered by the bill sponsor would require ridesharing companies to contract with the Department of Financial Services (DFS) to review their insurance and background check process. The DFS will have the authority to impose civil penalties if the companies are noncompliant. The bill has two more committee stops before being heard by the full Senate.

The House companion bill HB 221 has passed all committee stops and will be heard on the floor of the  House soon.


Moffitt funding:

The Senate Regulated Industries Committee passed SB 662 unanimously.  The bill has two more committee stops in the Senate before being heard by the entire Senate.

The House version HB 651 has not been heard in a committee meeting yet.

The Chamber SUPPORTS SB 647/HB 651

 

As things are changing in Tallahassee, Washington D.C. and here in Hillsborough County, the Tampa Chamber is watching those issues that are important to the community and your business. Here is some of what we are watching:

  • Possible changes to the Affordable Health Care Act
  • Possible changes with the relations between the U.S. and Cuba
  • Appropriations request rule changes in Tallahassee
  • Medical Marijuana and what that means to Tampa Bay
  • Workers’ Comp. Rate
  • Premium Transit Study
  • Regional MPO

Policy & Transportation Digest

Elected Florida Secretary of State

Senator Aaron Bean  offered a joint resolution this week that would allow voters to decide if the office of Secretary of State should be an elected position again.

Florida House begins to work on budget cuts

Members of the Florida House began to look at budget cuts as part of the Chamber’s budget proposal.

This week in Tallahassee:

Economic Incentives:

This week, the Florida House passed HB 7005 which will among other things, eliminate Enterprise Florida. This will make it difficult for Florida to compete with other states when attracting new businesses to the state.

Currently, there is no Senate companion bill.

The Chamber OPPOSED HB 7005.

The Florida House also approved HB 0009 which drastically weakens the capacity of Visit Florida, the state’s tourism marketing agency.

Currently, there is no Senate companion bill.

The Chamber OPPOSSED HB 0009

If you would like to encourage your State Representative and State Senator to continue the conversation regarding incentives and tourism, please click hereto send them an email. 


Public Transportation Commission:

The House Local, Federal & Veterans Affairs Subcommittee unanimously passedHB 647, a local bill that will eliminate the Hillsborough County Public Transportation Commission.  The bill has two more committee stops before being heard on the floor of the Florida House.

The Chamber SUPPORTS HB 647


Moffitt funding:

The Senate Regulated Industries Committee passed SB 662 unanimously.  The bill has two more committee stops in the Senate before being heard by the entire Senate.

The House version HB 651 has not been heard in a committee meeting yet.

The Chamber SUPPORTS SB 647/HB 651

 

As things are changing in Tallahassee, Washington D.C. and here in Hillsborough County, the Tampa Chamber is watching those issues that are important to the community and your business. Here is some of what we are watching:

  • Possible changes to the Affordable Health Care Act
  • Possible changes with the relations between the U.S. and Cuba
  • Appropriations request rule changes in Tallahassee
  • Medical Marijuana and what that means to Tampa Bay
  • Workers’ Comp. Rate
  • Premium Transit Study
  • Regional MPO

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Policy & Transportation Digest

City to host Street Car Expansion meeting

As part of the current Premium Transit Study, the City of Tampa will hold three public meetings on the possibility of expanding the Street Car.  The first meeting will be held on March 7 at the Tampa Bay History Center from 5:30-7:30pm.

Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce Participates in Statewide Call Supporting Ridesharing

The Tampa Chamber was asked this week to participate in a call supporting HB 221/SB 340 Transportation Network Companies that will provide a statewide regulations for TNC’s like Uber.

How Many Structurally Unsafe Bridges are there in the U.S.?

There are over 100,000 structurally deficient bridges in America.  Hillsborough County and the State of Florida are better off than other states and communities on this issue.

What happened in Tallahassee this week:

This week HB 221 Transportation Network Companies sponsored by Representative Sprowls and Representative Grant was passed the Government Accountability Committee by a vote of 21-1.  The bill will be heard next on the floor of the Florida House during the legislative session.

The bill will allow for a statewide set of standards governing and authorizing ridesharing services and transportation network companies in Florida.

SB 340,  Transportation Network Companies sponsored by Senator Brandes The Florida Senate companion bill of the bill has been referred to the Senate Banking and Insurance Committee for its first of three stops in the Senate.  As of today, it has not been placed on an agenda.

The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce Supports HB 221 and SB 340.

Also, this week, HB  7005 Economic Programs sponsored by Careers & Competition Subcommittee was passed the House Appropriations Committee by a vote of 18 to 12.  The bill will next be heard on the floor of the Florida House during the legislative session.

The bill will eliminate economic incentives and tourist marketing dollars. It also calls for the elimination of Enterprise Florida and Visit Florida.

Currently, there is no Senate Companion Bill

The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce sent a letter earlier this week to all the members of the Appropriations Committee.

The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce opposes HB 7005

HB 651 Cigarette tax Collection Trust Fund sponsored by Senator Grant has been referred to the House Health Care Appropriations Committee as its first of three stops.

SB 662 Cigarette tax Collection Trust Fund sponsored by Senator Young is the Senate companion bill has been referred to the Senate Regulated Industries Committee as its first of three stops.

The bill will allow Moffitt Cancer Center to increase their share of the Cigarette tax by 8 million dollars annually.  The money will be used to construct a new Research Tower and provide some upgrades to the 30-year-old campus.

The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce supports HB 651 and SB 662.

This week marked the final committee week in Tallahassee.  The 2017 Legislative Session will begin on March 7.

As things are changing in Tallahassee, Washington D.C. and here in Hillsborough County, the Tampa Chamber is watching those issues that are important to the community and your business. Here is some of what we are watching:

  • Possible changes to the Affordable Health Care Act
  • Possible changes with the relations between the U.S. and Cuba
  • Appropriations request rule changes in Tallahassee
  • Medical Marijuana and what that means to Tampa Bay
  • Workers’ Comp. Rate
  • Premium Transit Study

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Policy & Transportation Digest

President Trump and Governor Scott talk Health Care and Cuba

During the President’s visit this week, he and the Governor had a private meeting to discuss issues important to Florida including affordable health care and Cuba.

Uber Hires Engineer to develop to work on Flying Cars

Uber has hired a NASA veteran Engineer Mark Moore to work on the entitative called Uber Elevate.

Moffitt Day at the Florida Capitol

Over 75 people including the wife of former Buccaneers Coach Jon Gruden travel to the Capitol in Tallahassee to support one of the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce’s top priorities for 2017, legislation that will increase Moffitt Cancer Center’s portion of the cigarette tax.


What happened in Tallahassee this week:

This week HB 221 General Transportation Network Companies sponsored by Representative Sprowls and Representative Grant passed its first committee in the Florida House by a vote of 14-1.

 The bill will allow for a statewide set of standards governing and authorizing ridesharing services and transportation network companies in Florida.  A companion bill is expected to be heard a Senate Committee meeting later in February.

The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce supports this bill.


Also, this week, PCB CCS 17-01 Economic Programs
sponsored by Careers & Competition Subcommittee passed by a vote of 10-5. 

The bill will eliminate economic incentives and tourist marketing dollars. It also calls for the elimination of Enterprise Florida and Visit Florida. 

The Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce opposes this bill.

 

As things are changing in Tallahassee and in Washington D.C., the Tampa Chamber is watching those issues that are important to the community and your business. Here is some of what we are watching:

  • Possible changes to the Affordable Health Care Act
  • Possible changes with the relations between the U.S. and Cuba
  • Overtime regulations changes and legal rulings
  • Appropriations request rule changes in Tallahassee
  • Medical Marijuana and what that means to Tampa Bay
  • Workers’ Comp. Rate

Policy & Transportation Digest

Governor Scott Releases Budget Proposal

Governor Rick Scott released his “Fighting for Florida’s Future” budget this week.  Highlights include a $618 million in tax cuts and $85 million dollars for economic incentives.  Also noted by the Governor are funding increases in education and the environment.

Uber and Daimler Strike a Deal for Self-Driving Cars

Daimler and Uber have signed an agreement to combine technology in the future.  While specifics of the deal were not released, it could change the way autonomous vehicles and ridesharing operates in the future.

Florida Business Leaders Share their Concerns for Cuts to Incentives Programs

In reaction to a bill filed in the Florida House to eliminate Enterprise Florida, business leaders from across the state express their concerns about how the loss of incentives will affect the state’s economy.

As things are changing in Tallahassee and in Washington D.C., the Tampa Chamber is watching those issues that are important to the community and your business. Here is some of what we are watching:

  • Appropriations request for Tampa Bay
  • Possible changes to the Affordable Health Care Act
  • Possible changes with the relations between the U.S. and Cuba
  • Overtime regulations changes and legal rulings
  • Appropriations request rule changes in Tallahassee
  • Medical Marijuana and what that means to Tampa Bay
  • Workers’ Comp. Rate

Policy & Transportation Digest

Uber Self Driving Cars in California

After confusion regarding the legality of operating in California, Uber is now operating, for mapping purposes only, in San Francisco.

Governor Scott Unveils Business Rent Tax plan

The Governor will again support the move to reduce the taxes paid on  commercial leases. As a top priority during the 2017 Legislative Session that begins in March, the Governor has said that he believes that a reduction in the Florida only tax  will help businesses grow.

Atlanta First Stop in Autonomous Bus Tour

A driverless bus visited Altanta as a first stop on a cross country bus tour.  Other cities on the tour for the Washington D.C. based technology firm include Arlington, Texas., Los Angeles, California, and San Jose, California.

As things are changing in Tallahassee and in Washington D.C., the Tampa Chamber is watching those issues that are important to the community and your business. Here is some of what we are watching:

  • Possible changes to the Affordable Health Care Act
  • Possible changes with the relations between the U.S. and Cuba
  • Overtime regulations changes and legal rulings
  • Appropriations request rule changes in Tallahassee
  • Medical Marijuana and what that means to Tampa Bay
  • Workers’ Comp. Rate