• We're proud to be the Navarre area's only independent professionally run Chamber of Commerce with an office located in the "Heart of Navarre" at 1804 Prado Street.  

    As we have for almost 50 years, we remain focused on our mission:

    "To promote civic and economic prosperity throughout our community."

  • Florida Chamber Summarizes 2020 Legislative Session

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    March 19, 2020
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    Florida Legislature Takes Steps to Keep Florida's Momentum Going
    Lowers Cost of Living, Reduces Cost of Doing Business, Prepares for Future Growth,
    Protects Florida's Constitution and Prepares for Virus' Impact
     
     
     
     

     
    As we work to grow Florida's economy from the 17th largest in the world to the 10th, the Florida Chamber is uniting business for good around the Florida 2030 blueprint - Florida's next strategic plan. Governor Ron DeSantis and the Florida Legislature took steps during the 2020 Legislative Session to keep Florida's momentum going.
     
    Lawmakers passed 12 Florida Chamber-backed bills that lower the cost of living, reduce the cost of doing business, prepare for future growth, and protect Florida's Constitution.
     
    The Florida Chamber's 2020 Jobs Agenda was supported by hundreds of local chamber members traveling to Tallahassee to meet with their lawmakers, and 144 separate Florida Chamber testimonials before House and Senate committees - all backed by a lobbying and public affairs team of 30 strong.
     
    The Florida Chamber was also instrumental in defeating 23 bills bad for business, including bills that would insert government between employers and employees with all sorts of new employer mandates and create new lines of lawsuits - making Florida's poor legal climate even worse.
     
    The 60-day legislative session was extended by one-week, in part due to the economic uncertainty surrounding the coronavirus which caused a delay in finalizing the $93.2 billion state budget. Lawmakers filed 3,578 bills, and passed 210.
     
    Chief among Florida Chamber-backed legislation that passed this session are bills that:
    • Strengthened Florida's school choice options to serve even more students,
    • Increased access to healthcare by expanding scope of practice for advanced registered nurse practitioners,
    • Invested in Florida's economic development and tourism marketing programs,
    • Protected the environment with long-term water quality investments,
    • Ensured Florida remains the Sunshine State, not the 'melanoma state,' by preempting scientifically dubious local bans on proven sunscreens,
    • Protected Florida's Constitution from special interests buying their way onto Florida's ballot, and
    • Invested in Florida's rural communities with cost-effective economic development efforts.
    Meanwhile, not all lawmakers were trying to make Florida more competitive. Some in the legislature tried to create a patchwork of regulations increasing costs on businesses, families and consumers. Additionally, there were a host of attempted mandates on job creators, including misguided wage and employment condition mandates.
     
    And throughout session, the Florida Chamber took on attacks from those that want to make Florida less competitive, including government unions, billboard trial lawyers and fringe environmental groups seeking to give the same legal rights you enjoy as a citizen to their local river or lake.
     
     

    Lowering the Cost of Doing Business
     
     
    Motor Vehicle Dealers Bill  Statute of Limitations
    To help improve Florida's bottom five legal climate, lawmakers passed a bill that clarifies that the dangerous instrumentality doctrine, which does not apply to rental vehicles, also does not apply to loaner vehicles when a car is being serviced and certain insurance requirements are met. To strengthen Florida's legal climate, the statute of limitations is reduced to one year, down from four years, for employment discrimination complaints before the Florida Commission on Human relations, regardless of whether the Commission made a reasonable cause determination within 180 days.
     
     
    Stopped Employer Mandates  Defeated Anti-Business Tax Policy
    Successfully blocked more than a dozen bad for business employer mandates that would create a new cause of legal action, interfere in the employer-employee relationship and prohibit job creators from reviewing information on job applicants. Stopped an attempt to increase the corporate income tax 
    burden on job creators.
     
     
     

    Lowering the Cost of Living
     
     
    Expanding Access to Healthcare
    At the urging of the Florida Chamber's Healthcare Partnership, lawmakers expanded the scope of practice for Advanced Practice Registered Nurses (APRN) allowing them to practice medicine to the full extent of their education and training. The Florida Chamber's Healthcare Partnership has a seven-year long history of supporting expanded scope of practice.
     
     

    Preparing for Future Growth
     
     
    Florida's Future
    Workforce
    Long-Term Water
    Quality Investments
    VISIT FLORIDA,
    Enterprise Florida, Inc.
    and Space Florida
    Two Florida Chamber-backed bills will further improve Florida's talent pipeline by increasing access for parents to choose the best learning environment for their children, and encouraging schools to promote both duel enrollment classes as well as AP college classes. At the urging of the Florida Chamber's Infrastructure Coalition, lawmakers made long-term investments in water quality, and eliminated the fringe legal philosophy known as the "rights of nature" movement.
     
    To help keep Florida's momentum going, lawmakers invested in Enterprise Florida, Inc., VISIT FLORIDA and Space Florida.
     
     

    Protecting Florida's Constitution
     
     
    Returning the Constitutional Amendment Process Back to Floridians
    Florida's Constitution has been under attack by out-of-state special interests buying their way onto Florida's ballot to advance their own interests. At the urging of the Florida Chamber, lawmakers passed a bill allowing the Florida Supreme Court to clarify if a proposal violates the U.S. Constitution, ends the state subsidy of petition gathering firms by requiring that a sponsor pay the actual cost of validating signatures, gives voters more information about the proposed measure appearing on their ballot, and saves government resources by requiring a higher threshold for Supreme Court review.
     
     
    Moving Forward
    The Florida Chamber will soon release its Legislative Report Card - a comprehensive report based on over 4,000 individual votes on the Florida Chamber's 2020 Jobs Agenda.
     
    Click here to read the complete Florida Chamber 2020 Legislative Summary.
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    DOWNLOAD 2020 LEGISLATIVE SUMMARY
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
     
    Contact:
    Chanda Ryan, Executive Director
    Chanda.Ryan@NavarreChamber.com, 850.939.3267