Posted by: tampachamber on Saturday, March 25, 2017

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