Scott launches tax-cut tour; hears about taxes, insurance, medical marijuanaby George Bennett | September 10th, 2013
WEST PALM BEACH — Gov. Rick Scott opened a “Tax Cut Tour” here this morning by listening to ideas and concerns at a Business Development Board meeting that drew more than 100 people to the Palm Beach County Convention Center.
Scott has called for an election-year cut of $500 million in taxes and fees in 2014, but hasn’t specified which levies he’d like to see cut. Two large posters at the meeting included some possible cuts as “conversation starters” but not necessarily policy prescriptions, Scott spokeswoman Jackie Schutz said.
The “conversation starters” included car registration fees, which were hiked by the GOP-controlled legislature and signed by then-Gov. Charlie Crist in 2009; property taxes; and taxes on cell phones and commercial rents.
Several members of the business-tilted crowd mentioned the tax on commercial rents, and Scott seemed sympathetic. At one point, the governor mused about the possibility of phasing out the 6 percent tax by reducing it by 1 percent each year.
While the topic of the day was tax and fee cuts, Scott also heard from people who called for more spending on small-business grants, incentives for biotech firms and infrastructure projects. He also heard concerns about homeowner insurance costs and from Louis Porteous, an advocate for legalized medical marijuana, who asked if Scott would “get in the way of” efforts to collect petitions to put the question on the 2014 ballot.
Said Scott: “Here’s the process: you go get the signatures, you get on the ballot. The governor’s office has nothing to do with it.”
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