Florida Chamber says Session improved business climate in the Sunshine State
The Florida Chamber’s Future of Florida Forum.

florida chamber - future of florida forum
Lawsuit abuse limits and school choice were among Chamber priorities that passed.

The Florida Chamber of Commerce checked off a list of wins for business this Session. Expansions on school choice and limits on lawsuits made it through The Process, and Florida’s most prominent business voice said the state would be better for it.

“The Florida Chamber has been fighting to make Florida more competitive for years, so it’s no surprise Florida is No. 1to in the nation in income migration with $4.48 million coming in every hour and the national model for economic growth and competitiveness,” said Mark Wilson, president and CEO of the Florida Chamber.

“The Florida Chamber’s priorities passed this Legislative Session will continue this momentum for Florida — driving our economy, growing private-sector jobs and creating additional economic opportunities for all Floridians and local businesses.”

Representatives from the Chamber testified 181 times on bills impacting businesses, and it will begin a process immediately to grade lawmakers’ votes for its anticipated Legislative report card.

But overall, the Session was money, as far as the Chamber is concerned. Beyond passing a record $116 billion-plus budget, the business group counted a lawsuit abuse bill already signed as a success. Leaders said that would improve the state’s reputation as one of the worst legal climates to do business, and Chamber leaders believe the change in law will reduce frivolous lawsuits.

Chamber officials say the average household in Florida effectively pays a lawsuit abuse tax of $5,000 for the right to live in the state. Business officials hope the legal changes will ease that burden.

A new expansion of universal school vouchers has long been a priority for the Chamber and crossed the finish line this year.

Business groups also backed an affordable housing bill, workforce education training and rural development efforts that all found a place in policies and the budget passed by lawmakers.

Support for autonomous vehicles and forward-looking transportation policy has also been a priority for the Chamber. Leaders cheered support for the Implementing Solutions from Transportation Research and Evaluating Emerging Technologies (I-Street) lab at the University of Florida, which will grade Florida’s highways for futureproofing.

The Chamber also backed accessibility to KidCare, something the business group said will ensure parents don’t face a fiscal cliff and impossible choices on insuring children.

And the organization supported so-called paycheck protection legislation, ending automatic pay deductions to support unions. Provisions passed this year after collapsing at the end of prior Sessions.

Overall, Chamber leaders said there is plenty to count as success for Florida’s economy.

“The Florida Chamber is in year-round pursuit to unify business leaders from every district to the state Capitol and to earn their support of the Florida Business Agenda,” said Florida Chamber Board of Directors Volunteer Chairman Charles Bailes III, Chairman and CEO of ABC Fine Wine & Spirits.

“We are successful during any election cycle when the business community is united and makes the right things happen to ensure Florida is the most competitive state in the country to run a business, raise a family and enjoy our quality of life.”

Jacob Ogles

Jacob Ogles has covered politics in Florida since 2000 for regional outlets including SRQ Magazine in Sarasota, The News-Press in Fort Myers and The Daily Commercial in Leesburg. His work has appeared nationally in The Advocate, Wired and other publications. Events like SRQ’s Where The Votes Are workshops made Ogles one of Southwest Florida’s most respected political analysts, and outlets like WWSB ABC 7 and WSRQ Sarasota have featured his insights. He can be reached at [email protected].


  • Dont Say FLA

    May 7, 2023 at 10:39 am

    What else would they say? Has anybody asked Disney whether or not the business climate improved? LOFL

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  • Bill McClure

    May 7, 2023 at 10:56 am

    “Improved the business climate” AkA Made more grifting possible..piss poor wages throughout Florida while a handful of hogs prosper. At a national level, cut spending and taxes to benefit the super rich. Money doesn’t trickle down… only rich people vacation in Florida to throw the pigs a few crumbs. Hell of an economic system. Public sector is superficial and all focused on the incarceration industry.

    • RIch people dont go to Florida

      May 7, 2023 at 6:36 pm

      The only people who still vacation in Florida are people with several children and they live within a short day’s drive and can’t afford Myrtle Beach

  • Tjb

    May 7, 2023 at 4:52 pm

    What have the Republican led government done for Florida citizens. Cost of housing and insurance have skyrocketed. The quality of life in Florida has gotten significantly worst.

  • Translation

    May 7, 2023 at 6:34 pm

    Translation of “good place for doing business:” It means “bad place to be a worker, but maybe retire there”

Comments are closed.


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