Media Release


Release Date: January 10, 2013


Elimination of Manufacturing Equipment Tax
will Benefit Florida's Small Businesses

FSBDCN State Office: On Wednesday, Gov. Rick Scott announced plans to grow Florida’s manufacturing industry by eliminating sales tax on manufacturing equipment. The Governor hopes the tax break will help bring more manufacturing firms to Florida, creating jobs in a critical industry for the state. Florida is home to over 17,500 manufacturing companies, employing more than 300,000 Floridians.

“Other states do not charge a sales tax on buying machinery and we’ve got to do the exact same thing. Florida’s current policy puts our state at a competitive disadvantage because most states do not force manufacturers to pay taxes on the purchase of equipment or require them to adhere to regulations for tax exemptions,” said Gov. Scott. “Building up Florida manufacturing is about building Florida jobs across our state.”

Florida’s exporting industry will also benefit from the Governor’s plan. Florida’s ports are a major driving force in the economy. The state benefits from unmatched access to Latin American and the Caribbean, providing an outlet to export the state’s manufactured goods. Ninety percent of the state’s exports are manufactured here in Florida. In 2011, Florida businesses produced and exported nearly $60.6 billion in goods.

The proposed tax break will also greatly benefit the state’s small businesses. Small businesses are essential to the economy, creating four out of every five jobs and accounting for 85 percent of the state’s business.

“The Governor’s focus is great news, as it means an increased role for Florida’s small businesses which comprise almost 96 percent of the state’s exporting firms, producing more than 67 percent of total exports,” said Jerry Cartwright, State Director of the Florida SBDC Network. “This also means the potential creation of even more small businesses and the jobs and positive economic impact that come with them. The SBDC looks forward to meeting the critical needs and continuing to provide the foundation for the development of new small businesses that are created as a result of the governor’s proposal.”

According to an independent study, Economic Impact of SBDC Business Development Activities on the Florida Economy, 2012, established manufacturing firms that received business consulting from the Florida SBDC Network saw a job growth of 8.7 percent, compared to 1.4 percent growth for the average Florida manufacturing firm. The FSBDCN helps create high-skill, high-wage jobs in the state, such as jobs in the manufacturing industry. The manufacturing industry currently pays an average of 122 percent of the annual salary in Florida.

In 2011, the Florida SBDC Network served 38,444 entrepreneurs and small business owners, resulting in 43,856 jobs created, retained and saved; $5.5 billion in sales growth; $96.6 million in capital accessed; $313.9 million in government contract awards; and 1,026 new businesses started.

Florida SBDCs have been at the forefront of identifying new opportunities for manufacturing and exporting businesses for over 35 years. The FSBDC Network has nourished a statewide partnership between higher education and economic development organizations, dedicated to providing emerging and established business owners with management and technical assistance, enabling overall growth and increased profitability for the businesses and economic prosperity for the state. A statewide service network of 39 centers with 65 outreach locations, the FSBDC Network is funded in part through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration, hosted by the University of West Florida and accredited through the national Association of SBDCs. To learn more about the FSBDC Network or to find a SBDC near you, visit or call 1.866.737.7232.

State Office l UWF Office of Economic Development & Engagement
11000 University Pkwy, Bldg 38 l Pensacola, FL 32514
866.737.7232 or 850.473.7800 l