The Real Deal Miami

Cutting commercial lease taxes an industry priority

Florida Legislature mulls two proposed bills to reduce fee on rents
March 04, 2014 10:30AM

taxesReducing taxes paid on commercial real estate leases is a top priority for industry groups lobbying the Florida Legislature, which is mulling two measures that could save businesses about $235 million per year.

After attempts to eliminate the tax altogether failed last year, real estate interests are pushing state lawmakers to gradually reduce it, Daily Business Review reported. Florida is currently the only state that collects sales tax on commercial leases, with a 6 percent fee that produces $1.2 billion in annual revenue.

A proposed bill in the Florida Senate would reduce that to 5 percent. The Florida House has a similar bill that would save commercial tenants about $235 million per year.

Those against the tax say it costs Florida 185,000 new jobs per year because companies are discouraged from relocating to the state and others hold off on expanding to avoid higher taxes. [Daily Business Review]Eric Kalis