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CFO Jimmy Patronis Announces 2024 “Florida Fights for Freedom” Legislative Priorities

1/23/2024
For Immediate Release: Tuesday, January 23, 2024
Contact: Office of Communications, Communications@MyFloridaCFO.com, 850.413.2842

CFO Jimmy Patronis Announces 2024 “Florida Fights for Freedom” Legislative Priorities

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Today, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis announced his 2024 ‘Florida Fights for Freedom’ Legislative priorities. Among the CFO’s priorities are fighting back against the IRS, protecting first responders from the dangers of EV fires, supporting policyholders, safeguarding cryptocurrency assets, and barring state agencies from contracting with censorship companies like NewsGuard.

CFO Jimmy Patronis said, “As CFO, I couldn’t be more proud of our state and all of our successes. We have strong leadership and common-sense policies that Washington can only dream about. This legislative session, we’ll work to build on our state’s success by fighting for freedom and keeping our taxes low and our economy strong. A couple of my top priorities include defending taxpayers and businesses by protecting Floridians from IRS overreach, barring state agencies from contracting with censorship companies like NewsGuard, and bolstering the insurance consumer services provided by DFS. We know all too well that the Feds have gone way too far, and we must do something to fight back to ensure that money stays in the pockets of Floridians instead of the pockets of corrupt greedy bureaucrats in Washington. That is why as your CFO, I will continue to Fight for Freedom!”  

CFO Jimmy Patronis 2024 Legislative Priorities

 

Defending Taxpayers & Businesses

Fighting Back Against the IRS

A top priority of CFO Patronis has been Fighting Back Against the IRS and protecting Florida taxpayers from targeting by the tax agency. This legislation will empower users on third party payment processors (like PayPal and Venmo) to avoid wrongfully paying taxes on certain transactions the IRS is targeting. Additionally, the legislation will create the Tax Advocate within the CFO’s office to give Florida taxpayers a seat at the table when IRS issues arise. When taxpayers are treated unfairly this legislation will identify agents who are harassing Floridians.

 

Senate Bill 1066 – Senator Colleen Burton

House Bill 939 – Representative Griff Griffitts

 

Senate Bill 1098 – Senator Nick DiCeglie
House Bill 989 – Representative Chip LaMarca

 

Small Business Sales Tax Cut
As a former small business owner, CFO Patronis has made it his mission to support small businesses and job creators. The tax relief legislation provides counties with the authority to provide tax breaks for small local businesses by allowing local governments to forgo the collection of their business rent taxes. Additionally, it would give small businesses additional tax relief and allow local governments to exercise fiscal responsibility of taxpayer dollars.

 

Senate Bill 1030 – Senator Ana Maria Rodriguez
House Bill 1001 – Representative Cyndi Stevenson

 

Barring Taxpayer Support of Media Censorship Companies
CFO Patronis is fighting for a Consumer Protection bill that, among other items, bars state agencies from contracting with censorship companies like NewsGuard, which is a self-described media monitoring, technology company. Florida must ensure taxpayer dollars are not weaponized to blacklist certain Florida businesses.

 

Senate Bill 1066 – Senator Colleen Burton
House Bill 939 – Representative Griff Griffitts

 

Protecting Consumers

 

Bolstering Insurance Consumer Services
In an effort to better serve Florida’s insurance policyholders, the CFO announced plans to bolster the service provided by the Florida Department of Financial Services (DFS), Division of Insurance Consumer Services, in the 2024 Legislative Session. Included in the 2024 DFS agency budget request is approximately $5.5 million to strengthen the Division through increased staffing, field offices, mediation services, and training to better serve Florida insurance policyholders and short-circuits claims issues before they escalate, especially following disasters. It would also ensure carriers have personnel to troubleshoot and expedite claims.

 

Senate Bill 1098 – Senator Nick DiCeglie
House Bill 989 – Representative Chip LaMarca

 

Safeguarding Cryptocurrency Assets
CFO Patronis is working to protect Florida’s cryptocurrency assets and ensure that they remain democratized tools for free-market capitalism. By defining cryptocurrency as a form of unclaimed property, the State of Florida can protect financial assets that belong in the hands of its rightful owner. Since taking office in 2017, the CFO has given back over $2.2 billion in unclaimed property to Floridians and this bill will allow Florida to safeguard crypto assets until claimed.

 

Senate Bill 1098 – Senator Nick DiCeglie
House Bill 989 – Representative Chip LaMarca

 

Home Hardening Sales Tax Exemption
The CFO is supporting the expansion of the Florida Home Hardening Initiative passed in the 2022 Legislative Session. This legislation establishes a two-year sales tax exemption on the retail sales of items like impact-resistant windows, doors, and garage doors. This legislation will expand the program, which ends in June 2024, to June 2026. Overall, the Florida Home Hardening program has saved homeowners an estimated $495 million since July 2022. Together with the My Safe Florida Home program, the CFO has used every tool in the toolbox to help insurance consumers lower their premiums and combat rising insurance rates in our state.

Senate Bill 890- Senator Jim Boyd
House Bill 835 – Representative Wyman Duggan

 

My Safe Florida Home Expansion

The CFO is requesting $200 million in funding for the My Safe Florida Home Program. The program provides grants to policyholders to protect their homes from wind damage by keeping roofs, doors and windows intact during a hurricane. The less vulnerable the property is to damage, the lower the premium will be.

 

Roofing Contract Rescission

To protect consumers from bad actors that take advantage of homeowners after a storm hits, CFO Patronis is supporting a ten-day roofing contract rescission window during a declared State of Emergency. Post hurricane, homeowners are more vulnerable to fraud and schemes. Because of large influxes of damage at the same time, there are bad actors who come in to take advantage of homeowners when they are the most vulnerable after their home is damaged or completely destroyed. This ten-day rescission period would give consumers the peace of mind to get out of a contract if they unknowingly signed a contract with a bad actor.

 

Senate Bill 1066 – Senator Colleen Burton

House Bill 939 – Representative Griff Griffitts

 

Supporting First Responders

 

Fighting Electric Vehicle & Lithium-ion Battery Fires
Florida leads the way in crafting new solutions to new problems like the fire hazards associated with Electric Vehicles. With the advent of lithium-ion batteries being used in battery-powered scooters, golf carts, and cars, EV fires are a new phenomenon that our firefighters are battling every day. It is imperative that Florida creates policies and procedures around lithium-ion batteries to prevent potential disasters. During Hurricane Ian, first responders witnessed several occasions where EVs that had been flooded by saltwater eventually caught fire. This is dangerous when considering that many of these vehicles are parked in garages or at apartment complexes where there is a risk of the entire complex catching fire.

 

Senate Bill 1098 – Senator Nick DiCeglie
House Bill 989 – Representative Chip LaMarca

 

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About CFO Jimmy Patronis  
Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis is a statewide elected official and a member of Florida’s Cabinet who oversees the Department of Financial Services. CFO Patronis works each day to fight insurance fraud, support Florida’s firefighters, and ensure the state’s finances are stable to support economic growth in the state. Follow the activities of the Department on Facebook (FLDFS) and Twitter (@FLDFS).

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