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Statement By:
Barney Bishop III, President and CEO, Associated Industries of Florida

Regarding Approval of Sales Tax Exemption for Manufacturers Expanding Florida Operations  

May 4, 2006

TALLAHASSEE —“The Legislature today has taken another monumental step to enhance economic development opportunities in Florida by passing a bill that eliminates the sales-tax on industrial machinery and equipment for our manufacturing and spaceport industries.

“Because this exemption is so vital to the growth of our manufacturing sector, Associated Industries has been working to achieve this goal for the last twenty years.  Manufacturing companies will now have a new economic incentive to purchase machinery and equipment that will allow them to expand their current business operations.  The exemption also provides a tremendous opportunity to attract new companies and job prospects to Florida.

“Neighboring states - who we compete with for business - are already offering companies this common-sense tax policy.  We salute our legislators for recognizing that this tax exemption will help create a more level playing field.

“Our state is fortunate to have Governor Jeb Bush as a firm supporter of this key legislation and so many other business-friendly initiatives. Throughout his administration, Governor Bush has led the charge toward creating a more vibrant economy by promoting business growth and the creation of new jobs.”