IMPACT Report: April 30, 2021

It's the final day of the regular session, and our director of governmental affairs, Justin Thames, is breaking down what we've witnessed over the last 60 days in Tallahassee. In this edition of IMPACT Report, he'll cover:

  • The passage of Florida's new Public Accountancy bill
  • The status of other House and Senate bills
  • And federal legislation aimed at providing targeted relief to the hotel industry

Bill Tracker

SB 616: Public Accountancy 
Referred to Regulated Industries; Commerce and Tourism; Rules 

Requires that certain applicants not be licensed in any state or territory in order to be licensed by endorsement; requires that a majority of the hours required for continuing education include specific content; authorizes certain Florida certified public accountants to apply to the Department of Business and Professional Regulation to have their license placed in a retired status, etc. 

Status: Voted favorable by Regulated Industries: YEAS 9, NAYS 0
              Voted favorable by Commerce and Tourism: YEAS 11, NAYS 0
              Voted favorable with CS by Rules: YEAS 16, NAYS 0 
              Received from Messages; Concurred with Amendment (438629)  
              Passed: YEAS 39, NAYS 0
              Ordered engrossed, then enrolled; Enrolled Text (ER) filed 

SB 50: Sales and Use Tax by Sen. Joe Gruters, CPA 
Referred to Commerce and Tourism; Finance and Tax; Appropriations 

Expands the definition of the term “retail sale” to include sales facilitated through a marketplace; defining the terms “remote sale” and “substantial number of remote sales”; provides that every person making a substantial number of remote sales is a dealer for purposes of the sales and use tax; provides that certain marketplace providers are dealers for purposes of the sales and use tax; provides that a marketplace seller, rather than the marketplace provider, is liable for sales tax collection and remittance under certain circumstances, etc. 

Effective Date: 7/1/2021 

Status: Voted favorable by Commerce and Tourism: YEAS 11, NAYS 0 
              Voted favorable with CS by Finance and Tax: YEAS 8, NAYS 0 
              Voted favorable with CS by Appropriations: YEAS 18, NAYS 0
              Voted favorable by full Senate: YEAS 30, NAYS 10

              In Messages - House of Representatives
              Voted favorable by full House: YEAS 93, NAYS 24 
              Signed by Officers and presented to Governor
              Approved by Governor; Chapter No. 2021-002  

SB 72: Civil Liability for Damages Relating to COVID-19 by Senator Brandes  
Referred to Judiciary; Commerce and Tourism; Rules 

Civil Liability for Damages Relating to COVID-19; Specifying requirements for civil actions based on COVID-19-related claims; requiring the court to make certain determinations in such actions; providing that plaintiffs have the burden of proof in such actions; providing preliminary procedures for civil actions based on COVID-19-related claims; requiring COVID-19-related claims to commence within specified timeframes, etc. 

Effective Date: 3/29/2021 

Status: Voted favorable by Judiciary: YEAS 7, NAYS 4  
             Voted favorable by Commerce and Tourism: YEAS 7, NAYS 4 
             Voted favorable by Rules: YEAS 10, NAYS 5 
             Placed on Special Order Calendar, 03/18/21; Read Second Time 
             Read Third Time; Passed: YEAS 24, NAYS 15
             Bill added to Special Order Calendar (3/25/2021); Read 2nd time 
             Read Third Time; passed: YEAS 83, NAYS 31 
             Approved by Governor, 3/29/21 

SB 152: Regulatory Reform by Sen. Manny Diaz Jr. 
Referred to Governmental Oversight and Accountability; Appropriations Subcommittee on Agriculture, Environment, and General Government; Appropriations; Rules 

Establishing the Red Tape Reduction Advisory Council within the Executive Office of the Governor; requiring an agency adopting a rule to submit a rule replacement request to the Administrative Procedures Committee; requiring the committee to examine rule replacement requests and existing rules; requiring the Administrative Procedures Committee to establish a regulatory baseline of agency rules; providing that a proposed rule may not cause the total number of rules to exceed the regulatory baseline, etc. 

Effective Date: 7/1/2021

Status: Filed and referred to Committee 

SB 344: Legislative Review of Occupational Regulations by Sen. Manny Diaz Jr. 
Referred to Governmental Oversight and Accountability; Appropriations; Rules 

Citing this act as the "Occupational Regulation Sunset Act"; establishing a schedule for the systematic review of occupational regulatory programs; providing for the abolition of personnel positions responsible for repealed programs; requiring the Department of Legal Affairs to prosecute or defend certain pending causes of action, etc. 

Effective Date: Except as otherwise expressly provided in this act, this act shall take effect upon becoming a law 

Status: Filed and referred to Committee 
             Voted favorable by Governmental Oversight and Accountability: 5 YEAS, 0 NAYS 
             Committee Substitute Text (C1) filed; now in Appropriations 

SB 154: Local Government Fiscal Transparency by Sen. Manny Diaz Jr.
Referred to Community Affairs; Finance and Tax; Appropriations 

Expanding the scope of a Legislative Auditing Committee review to include compliance with local government fiscal transparency requirements; providing procedures for the Auditor General and local governments to comply with the local government fiscal transparency requirements; revising reporting requirements for certain local government economic development incentives; creating the “Local Government Fiscal Transparency Act”; requiring local governments to post certain voting record information on their websites, etc.

Effective Date: 7/1/2021 

Status: Filed and referred to Committee

HB 1005: Investment of Condominium Association Funds by Rep. Sam Killebrew 
Referred to Insurance & Banking Subcommittee; Civil Justice & Property Rights Subcommittee; Commerce Committee 

Provides & revises condominium association recordkeeping requirements; provides alternative methods & requirements for investment of association funds; provides how earnings, rather than interest, that accrue on reserve funds may be used; excludes contracts for registered investment advisor services from certain requirements. 

Effective Date: 7/1/2021 

Status: Filed and referred to Committee 

HB 969: Consumer Data Privacy by Rep. Fiona McFarland  
Referred to Regulatory Reform Subcommittee; Civil Justice & Property Rights Subcommittee; Commerce Committee 

Consumer Data Privacy; Requires certain businesses to provide notice to consumers about data collection & selling practices; provides consumers right to request that certain data be disclosed, deleted, or corrected & to opt-in or opt-out of sale or sharing of such data; provides nondiscrimination measures, methods for requesting data & opting-in or opting-out of sale or sharing of such data, exemptions, applicability, contracts, & private cause of action, & enforcement & implementation; authorizes DLA to adopt rules. 

Effective Date: 1/1/2022 

Status: Voted favorable with CS by Regulatory Reform Subcommittee: 18 YEAS, 0 NAYS
              Voted favorable with CS by Civil Justice & Property Rights Subcommittee; 17 Yeas, 0 Nays 
              Voted favorable with CS by Commerce Committee

              Voted favorable with CS by Commerce Committee: 22 YEAS, 0 NAYS 
              Placed on Special Order Calendar, 4/20/21 
              Read Third Time; Passed: 118 YEAS, 1 NAYS; In Messages 
              Placed on Calendar, on 2nd reading; Substituted for SB 1734; Read Second Time; Amendments Adopted (285616,                    891990); Placed on Third Reading, 4/29/21 
              Read Third Time; Passed: 29 YEAS, 11 NAYS; In Returning Messages

SB 1624: Special District Accountability by Senator Ben Albritton 
Referred to Community Affairs; Governmental Oversight and Accountability; Appropriations 

Requires certain independent special districts to contract with an independent entity to conduct performance audits; requires the Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability to conduct performance audits of certain classifications of independent special districts; requiring the performance audits to be reported by a time certain; requires that certain data be included in financial audits of special districts, etc. 

Effective Date: 10/1/2021 

Status: Voted favorable by Community Affairs: 7 YEAS, 2 NAYS 
              Voted favorable by Governmental Oversight and Accountability: YEAS 6 NAYS 0 

              Voted favorable by Appropriations; 20 YEAS / 0 NAYS 
              Placed on Special Order Calendar, 4/27/21 
              Read Second Time; Substituted for HB 1103; Laid on Table, Refer to HB 1103 
              Passed; YEAS 40 NAYS 0 

To view more legislation the FICPA is tracking this legislative session, log into your member account and visit our Advocacy Action Center.  

Important Dates for the 2021 Legislative Session

April 30

60th day - Last day of Regular Session 


Other News

U.S. House Considering Targeted Relief for the Hotel Industry

Democrats in the U.S. House of Representatives introduced legislation this week that would direct targeted relief, including payroll grants and tax credits, to the ailing hotel industry.

As explained by the The Hill, the Save Hotel Jobs Act "would be the first to give targeted relief to hotels. Businesses in the industry thus far have been relying on relief from Payroll Protection Program (PPP) loans and other provisions from COVID-19 relief packages.

"The legislation would direct payroll grants to be utilized for payroll and benefit expenses for workers and require hotels that receive grants to give laid-off workers recall rights to get back to work. 

"It also would provide a personal protective equipment tax credit, which would allow a payroll tax credit for 50 percent of the costs of personal protective equipment, technology to reduce the impact of the pandemic, testing for employees and enhanced cleaning."

With travel and tourism playing such a significant role in our state's economy, this legislation will be of particular interest to Florida CPAs and their clients.


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