JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Here in Jacksonville’s Vistakon-Johnson & Johnson Vision Care facility, standing under a banner reading “Building up Florida manufacturing,” Governor Rick Scott shared his latest plan to bring Jacksonville more jobs.
"Today, I'm here to announce in the upcoming legislative session we will push for legislation to build up manufacturing in Florida,” Scott said at a news conference on Wednesday.
How is he going to do it?
Gov. Scott said he wants to eliminate the tax manufacturing companies pay to purchase equipment.
"In order to build up Florida manufacturing jobs, we must get rid of any and all barriers to manufacturing investment in our state,” said Scott.
He says the state can afford to eliminate the tax because of a projected budget surplus of more than $1 billion.
"We've balanced the budget, reduced taxes, paid down debt and now our state is growing again," said Governor Scott when asked about the billion dollar surplus. "And, because of that, right now we're projected to have this budget surplus."
In the state of Florida, there are currently 17,500 manufacturing companies that employ more than 300,000 people.
State Rep. Lake Ray, R-Jacksonville, believes if the tax is dropped those numbers will go up and it could mean more jobs here in Jacksonville.
"I think it's going to be very exciting. I don't know exactly what that number's going to be, but it will in fact create more jobs that we'll have here and more opportunity,” said Ray.
The Governor said his goal is to get the legislation passed so it could go into effect as early as July 1.