As Florida continues to deal with the constantly changing COVID-19 pandemic, questions remain as to how the state will reverse one of the worst recessions in history while at the same time maintaining prudent public health and safety measures. The difficulty lies in the unequal manner in which the virus has wreaked havoc on the state’s various economic sectors. Due to the varied effects, understanding the nature and scope of each sector’s unique pandemic challenges is crucial to providing substantive policy recommendations going forward.
As the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic continue to be felt by Florida’s businesses, non-profits, schools, colleges and universities, and healthcare providers, employers of all types are fearful of keeping their business open or reopening their business because of the threat of opportunistic, predatory, and expensive litigation resulting from alleged exposure to COVID-19 when they are taking proper precautions.
AS WE CLOSE OUT A TUMULTUOUS YEAR for Florida, defined by COVID-19 and its resulting disruptions to everyday life, we consider what may lie ahead for Florida’s economy in 2021. If there’s one thing assured for next year, it is that much economic uncertainty will persist against the backdrop of a constantly changing pandemic. Yet with several promising vaccines on the horizon and gradually improving labor market conditions, Florida looks poised to undergo the slow but steady process of economic rebuilding over the coming year.
College football teams serve as important economic drivers in their local communities.
Last month’s historic achievement does more than simply showcase human ingenuity and exploration; for residents on Florida’s Space Coast, the SpaceX mission signifies an economic rebound ten years in the making. For a local economy once devastated by the Space Shuttle Program’s end and the Great Recession, achievements in the private space industry have promoted a revitalized economy that continues to display an upward trajectory.
BRIDG was established as a not-for-profit, public-private partnership with support from state and local governments and leading manufacturing industry companies. For the 2019-20 fiscal year, state funding for BRIDG was withheld. BRIDG has the potential to generate thousands of high-skill, high-wage jobs, with billions of dollars in total earnings and hundreds of millions of dollars in state and local tax revenues. BRIDG has the potential to establish Central Florida as a major hub, if not THE major hub, for information technology research, innovation, and manufacturing in the world. Florida TaxWatch presents this report in hope that the Governor and Legislature will continue its investment in BRIDG for fiscal year 2020-21 and beyond.
In this research report, TaxWatch looks at the success of the IMR program in California in an attempt to answer the question “what if IMR was in use in Florida?” TaxWatch is pleased to present policymakers and stakeholders with an independent analysis of a program we think may be helpful in keeping the costs of workers’ compensation insurance down while helping to ensure that injured workers receive appropriate treatment.
While the TaxWatch maintains that incentives should not be used as a substitute for the fundamentals of good economic growth, TaxWatch does recommend that incentives for the film and television industry not be ignored as a part of the Florida’s overall economic development strategy.
In November 2018, Florida voters have a chance avoid a major property tax increase on owners of commercial or rental property, vacation or second homes, unimproved real estate, or any other non- homestead property. This tax increase will happen if the current 10 percent cap on non-homestead property assessments—scheduled to be repealed—is not reauthorized by the voters.
When completed, the new Brightline train will pass through the Treasure Coast region of the state without any planned stops. This has prompted local governments in the Treasure Coast region to pursue legislative and legal remedies in an attempt to derail Brightline. This report looks at these actions, and whether they are in the taxpayers best interest.