Democrats back House tax cut plan, but wary of Senate talks
Ka-Ching: The House passes its mega budget, wich has some pretty good things.

florida house
'I just ask that the House holds the line so we won’t have as big corporate tax cuts as the Senate has.'

The House on Wednesday passed HB 7071, a grab-bag of tax cut provisions, including time-limited sales tax exemptions for sports events, back-to-school items, hand tools, diapers and other items. That sets the stage for talks with the Senate on the Legislature’s final tax measure.

Although tax cut plans from the GOP-controlled House usually feature large corporate tax cuts that typically draw opposition from some Democrats, this year’s version also included enough measures aimed at consumers to win over all Democrats as the bill passed unanimously.

The bill, for example, has a one-year moratorium on sales taxes on diapers, part of a bill sponsored by Rep. Anna Eskamani, an Orlando Democrat, who said it would help low-income families.

“We have families across America who just can’t afford diapers,” Eskamani said.

State economists project parents will save $35 million during the one-year exemption for diaper sales taxes and $74.6 million through the one-year exemption on sales taxes on clothes for infants and toddlers also included in the bill.

Sales taxes on appliances such as refrigerators, washers, dryers and water heaters will also be exempted for one year, as will impact-resistant windows, doors and garage doors for two years.

The bill also includes a sales tax exemption on children’s books for three months in the summer; a “Tool Time” sales tax holiday on hand tools, power tools and other items Sept. 3-9; a “Freedom Week” sales tax holiday running July 1-7 on tickets to sports events, movies, museums, state parks, ballets, gym memberships as well as outdoor recreational equipment and pool supplies; and a traditional back-to-school sales tax holiday on clothing, school supplies and personal computers worth less than $1,500.

“Today we passed our most robust tax package ever, which will put more money back into the pockets of hardworking Floridians,” said House Speaker Chris Sprowls, a Palm Harbor Republican, in a released statement. “We’ve expanded existing tax breaks like the popular Freedom Week, Hurricane Preparedness and Back-to-School holidays, and we introduced new tax breaks to ensure that every person who resides, works and pays taxes in Florida is the beneficiary of these tax holidays at a time when everyday costs are rapidly increasing as a result of inflation.”

Democrats, though, are wary of how the bill might change after talks with the Senate in the final days of the Legislative Session, which is slated to end March 11.

“I just ask that the House holds the line so we won’t have as big corporate tax cuts as the Senate has,” said Rep. Angie Nixon, a Jacksonville Democrat.

Gray Rohrer


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