Monday, 20 June 2022 16:21

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 20, 2022
CONTACT:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (202) 680-9262

Governor Ron DeSantis Signed SB 1534 into Florida Statute to Increase Penalties for Organized Retail Theft and Stop Retail Crime Activity in Florida

Tallahassee, FL – Governor Ron DeSantis signed on Friday Senate Bill 1534, Retail Theft, by Senator Jim Boyd and Representative Chuck Clemons into Florida law. 

The new statute defines and applies third-degree and second-degree felonies for individuals or those in consort with one or more persons who commit two or occurring in a limited period of time in various merchant locations. 

"This measure will protect Floridians and Florida retailers by curtailing criminal activity in stores and holding thieves accountable for their actions," said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. "We are grateful for the support of Governor DeSantis for signing SB 1534 into law and for the leadership of Attorney General Ashley Moody, Senator Jim Boyd and Representative Chuck Clemons to crack down on organized retail crime in Florida."

To read SB 1534, visit:  https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2022/1534.

ABOUT  THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

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Thursday, 02 June 2022 09:32

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 2, 2022
CONTACT: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (202) 680-9262

Retail Sales This Year Expected to Match 2021 Forecast Despite Growing Inflation Concerns

Tallahassee, FL – This Father's Day, consumers are expected to spend an average of $171.79 to show dad some much-needed love, according to the latest survey released by the National Retail Federation (NRF).

"Shoppers are focused on finding new and creative ways to honor dad this Father's Day," says Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. "Remember, Florida retailers are here to provide the perfect gift for the father figures in your lives. When you shop local and 'Find it in Florida', you are helping support your community and local economy."

Three in four (76%) of American adults plan to celebrate the holiday, which falls on Sunday, June 19, this year. Nearly half of shoppers (44%) are prioritizing unique or different gifts this Father's Day, and 37% are looking to create a special memory with their gift.

One-quarter of shoppers plan to give dad a "gift of experience," while 37% are interested in gifting a subscription box this Father's Day.

Shoppers will spend, on average, $32.29 per person to take dad on a special outing to his favorite restaurant. Additional top spending gift categories for Father's Day include: 

  • Clothing - $26.62
  • Gift Cards - $23.02
  • Electronics - $19.32
  • Personal Care - $11.93
  • Home improvement/gardening - $11.60
  • Tools or appliances - $11.03
  • Sporting or leisure items - $9.86
  • Automotive accessories - $8.59
  • Greeting cards - $7.38
  • Books or CDs - $6.05
  • Other - $4.09

Forty percent of Father's Day gifts are expected to be purchased online while 34% of consumers plan to shop at department stores. Tied at 22%, the remaining shoppers will look towards specialty stores or discount stores to find that special item for dad.

This Father's Day, remember to "Find It In Florida" and support local retailers while shopping for dad. Your support for local retail helps boost the local economy and invests in community businesses. Learn more about the "Find It In Florida" program here

For more information on the forecast released by the National Retail Federation, visit: https://nrf.com/media-center/press-releases/consumers-spend-20-billion-fathers-day-gifts

ABOUT THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL RETAIL FEDERATION
NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs — 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.  

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Wednesday, 25 May 2022 12:17

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MAY 25, 2022
CONTACT: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (202) 680-9262

2022 Disaster Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday Runs May 28 Through June 10

Tallahassee, FL — Florida retail stores are stocked up to help Florida families save more and cut costs on hurricane supplies during Florida’s Disaster Preparedness Tax-Free Holiday. This year the holiday has been extended to 14 days beginning on Saturday, May 28, and running through Friday, June 10. 

“This year's forecasts predict an above-average season, with 19 named storms and four major hurricanes,” said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. “Florida retailers are prepared to help Florida families find all the supplies they need to weather the hurricane season. Take advantage of the tax-free holiday and additional local sales through June 10. When shopping for hurricane supplies, we encourage you to 'Find It In Florida' and support local retail businesses."

Beginning Saturday, May 28, Florida families can save on the purchase of eligible disaster preparedness items, including: 

  • Portable self-powered light source selling for $40 or less;
  • Certain portable self-powered radios selling for $50 or less;
  • Tarps selling for $100 or less;
  • Ground anchor systems or tie-down kits selling for $100 or less;
  • A gas or diesel fuel tank selling for $50 or less;
  • Packages of certain battery types, selling for $50 or less;
  • A nonelectric food storage cooler selling for $60 or less;
  • Portable generators selling for $1,000 or less; 
  • Reusable ice selling for $20 or less;
  • Portable power banks selling for $60 or less;
  • Smoke detectors or smoke alarms selling at $70 or less;
  • Fire extinguishers selling at $70 or less;
  • Carbon Monoxide Detectors selling at $70 or less;
  • Portable Kennels or pet carriers selling at $100 or less;
  • Dry pet food 15 lbs or less selling at $30 or less;
  • Cans or pouches of pet food selling at $2 or less;
  • Manual can openers selling at $15 or less;
  • Leashes, collars and muzzles selling at $20 or less;
  • Collapsible or travel-sized food/water bowls selling at $15 or less;
  • Cat litter 25 lbs or less selling at $25 or less;
  • Cat litter pans selling at $15 or less;
  • Pet waste disposable bags selling at $15 or less;
  • Pet pads selling at $20 or less;
  • Hamster or rabbit substrate selling at $15 or less; and
  • Pet beds selling at $40 or less. 

This year’s Disaster Preparedness Tax-Free Holiday was established when Governor DeSantis signed HB 7071 into law on May 6. The legislation was championed by Budget Chairs Sen. Kelli Stargel and Rep. Jay Trumbull, and the tax-free holiday was a priority of Sen. Joe Gruters and Sen. Keith Perry and Rep. Bobby Payne.

This hurricane season, the FRF encourages shoppers to "Find It In Florida" and shop at local retailers. Supporting local retail helps boost the local economy and supports Florida jobs. Learn more about the "Find It In Florida" program at the website

Florida’s hurricane season begins June 1. Floridians can visit FloridaDisaster.org to learn more about how to prepare and what supplies are needed.

ABOUT THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

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Friday, 06 May 2022 14:55

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MAY 6, 2022
CONTACT:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.(202) 680-9262

HB 7071 Establishes Four Tax-Free Holidays for Floridians to Stock Up and Save

Tallahassee, FL – Governor Ron DeSantis today signed  HB 7071 continuing historic tax holidays and establishing a new holiday or consumers to save on essentials.

The law renews three historic sales tax holidays for Florida consumers to prepare for hurricane season, cut costs on outdoor and recreational activities in Florida, and save on back-to-school shopping. In addition, a new tax holiday, known as "Tool Time,” provides opportunities for skilled workers to save on essential equipment.

"Thank you to Governor DeSantis and the Florida Legislature for your continued support of tax relief for Florida residents, families and trade workers," said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. "Florida's tax-free holidays cut costs for Floridians and allow them to invest in home protection, save on family fun, stock up for school and pursue trade opportunities."

The Disaster Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday will run over 14 days, beginning on May 28 through June 10. Floridians will find these hurricane preparation supplies to be tax-free:

  • Portable self-powered light source selling for $40 or less;
  • Certain portable self-powered radios selling for $50 or less;
  • Tarps selling for $100 or less;
  • Ground anchor systems or tie-down kits selling for $100 or less;
  • A gas or diesel fuel tank selling for $50 or less;
  • Packages of certain battery types, selling for $50 or less;
  • A nonelectric food storage cooler selling for $60 or less;
  • Portable generators selling for $1,000 or less; 
  • Reusable ice selling for $20 or less;
  • Portable power banks selling for $60 or less;
  • Smoke detectors or smoke alarms selling at $70 or less;
  • Fire extinguishers selling at $70 or less;
  • Carbon Monoxide Detectors selling at $70 or less;
  • Portable Kennels or pet carriers selling at $100 or less;
  • Dry pet food 15 lbs or less selling at $30 or less;
  • Cans or pouches of pet food selling at $2 or less;
  • Manual can openers selling at $15 or less;
  • Leashes, collars and muzzles selling at $20 or less;
  • Collapsible or travel-sized food/water bowls selling at $15 or less;
  • Cat litter 25 lbs or less selling at $25 or less;
  • Cat litter pans selling at $15 or less;
  • Pet waste disposable bags selling at $15 or less;
  • Pet pads selling at $20 or less;
  • Hamster or rabbit substrate selling at $15 or less; and
  • Pet beds selling at $40 or less. 

Florida's 2022 Freedom Week Sales Tax Holiday will take place July 1 through July 7 to encourage residents to enjoy time outdoors. The measure helps support local retail businesses and entertainment and boosts Florida's economy. Tax-free items include the following events scheduled from July 1 through December 31, 2022: 

  • Live music events;
  • Live sporting events;
  • Movies at the movie theater;
  • Entry to a museum, including annual passes;
  • Entry to a state park, including annual passes;
  • Entry to a ballet, play, or musical theatre performance;
  • Season tickets for ballets, plays, music events, or musical theatre performances;
  • Entry to a fair, festival, or cultural event; or
  • Access or use of private and/or membership clubs providing physical fitness facilities.

The holiday also includes tax-free purchases on Florida-related recreational supplies, including boating and water activity, camping, fishing, general outdoor supplies and sports equipment. 

The criteria for tax-free savings on boating and water activities include:

  • The first $75 on the price of boating and water activity supplies;
  • The first $35 on the price of recreational pool tubes, floats, inflatable chairs and pool toys;
  • The first $50 on the price of safety flares;
  • The first $150 on the price of water skis, wakeboards, kneeboards, and recreational inflatable water tubes or floats;
  • The first $300 on the price of paddleboards and surfboards;
  • The first $500 on the price of canoes and kayaks;
  • The first $75 on the price of paddles and oars; and
  • The first $25 on the price of snorkels, goggles, and swimming masks.
  • The first $75 on life jackets and coolers;

Floridians may also enjoy tax-free purchases of the following camping supplies:

  • The first $200 on the purchase of tents;
  • The first $50 on the price of sleeping bags, portable hammocks, camping stoves, and collapsible camping chairs; and
  • The first $30 on the price of camping lanterns and flashlights.

Florida shoppers more interested in fishing can find savings on:

  • The first $75 on the price of individual rods and reels; or
  • The first $150 on the price of a set of rods and reels;
  • The first $30 on the price of tackle boxes or bags; and
  • The first $5 on the price of individual bait or fishing tackle; or  
  • The first $10 on the price of multiple bait and tackle items sold together. 

Other recreational savings include tax-free purchases such as: 

  • Up to the first $15 on the price of sunscreen or insect repellant;
  • The first $100 on a pair of sunglasses;
  • The first $200 on a pair of binoculars;
  • The first $30 on the price of water bottles;
  • The first $50 on the price of hydration packs;
  • The first $250 of the sales price of outdoor gas or charcoal grills;
  • The first $50 of the sales price of bicycle helmets; 
  • The first $250 of the sales price of bicycles;
  • The first $100 on residential pool and spa replacement parts;
  • The first $150 on residential pool and spa chemicals; and
  • The first $40 on sports equipment.

Floridians can also save on equipment used for individual or team sports purposes. This does not include clothing or footwear selling for $40 or less.

The Back-to-School Sales Tax Holiday is scheduled from July 25 through August 7. Florida families will be eligible to purchase clothing and school supplies without paying sales tax. School-related items include: 

  • Clothing and shoes, priced $100 or less per item; 
  • Backpacks, handbags and wallets, priced $100 or less per item; 
  • School supplies, priced $50 or less per item;
  • Learning aids and jigsaw puzzles, selling for $30 or less; and
  • Personal computers or personal computer-related accessories, priced up to $1,500.

The latest addition is the "Tool Time" Sales Tax Holiday, scheduled from September 3 through September 9. Florida skilled trade workers will be eligible to purchase tools and items related to their careers without paying sales tax. Tax-free "Tool Time" items include: 

  • Hand tools selling for $50 or less;
  • Power tools selling for $300 or less;
  • Power tool batteries selling for $150 or less;
  • Work gloves selling for $25 or less;
  • Safety glasses selling for $50 or less; 
  • Protective coveralls selling for $50 or less; 
  • Work boots selling for $175 or less;
  • Tool belts selling for $100 or less;
  • Duffle/tote bags selling for $50 or less;
  • Toolboxes selling for $75 or less;
  • Toolboxes for vehicles selling for $300 or less;
  • Industry textbooks and codebooks selling for $125 or less;
  • Electrical voltage and testing equipment selling for $100 or less;
  • LED flashlights and shop lights selling for $50 or less;
  • Handheld pipe cutters, drain opening tools and plumbing inspection equipment selling for $100 or less; and
  • Shop lights selling for $100 or less.

ABOUT THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

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Monday, 02 May 2022 10:06

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 25, 2022
CONTACT: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (202) 680-9262

Retail Sales Are Forecasted to Reach Yet Another Record-Breaking High, Consumer Spending is Projected to Increase by $3.6 Billion from 2021

Tallahassee, FL – Floridians can expect Mother's Day to be bigger and better than ever this year as forecasts predict $31.7 billion in retail sales, according to the Florida Retail Federation.

A recent survey released by the National Retail Federation (NRF), reveals shoppers' plans to spend up to $3.6 billion more than the previous year. An increase in festivities this year is also expected as 84% of adults in the United States plan to celebrate Mother's Day.  

"Floridians are excited to celebrate moms," says Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. "Shop local, and 'Find it in Florida' when shopping for cards, gifts and necessities for all your Mother's Day festivities. Our local retail teams are stocked and ready to help you make this Mother's Day one to remember."

The survey also revealed that consumers plan to spend up to $25 more this year on Mother's Day purchases, averaging $245.76 per consumer.

This increase could be attributed to increased consumer preferences to spend quality time with loved ones. Experiential gifts have increased by 4% this year, as many shoppers look to celebrate mom with a special outing or tickets to a concert or sporting event. 

Mother's Day brunch and dinner plans are also in the works. Consumers planning to treat mom to a meal at her favorite restaurant will spend $40.90 on average.

There has also been a noticeable increase in spending on jewelry. Forty-one percent of shoppers plan to gift mom jewelry, up 7% from last year. In total, the survey estimates jewelry spending to reach $7 billion this holiday.

Still, the classic gifts of greeting cards and floral arrangements for mom remain the top two gift categories for Mother's Day in 2022. The top 10 gifts for mom this year include: 

  • Greeting Cards - 75%
  • Flowers - 72%
  • Special outing - 57%
  • Gift cards - 52%
  • Clothing/Accessories - 45%
  • Jewelry - 41%
  • Personal Service - 30%
  • Housewares/Gardening tools - 28%
  • Other - 28%
  • Books/CDs - 24%

When it comes to showing mom how special she is, consumers are still focused on finding a meaningful way to display their love. Forty-six percent of shoppers are looking to find a gift that is unique and different. Forty-one percent of shoppers are prioritizing creating a special memory with their gift to mom. 

Consumer trends have shown an increased interest in gifting product subscription services, as 39% of shoppers plan to extend their gift-giving beyond Mother's Day weekend.

While there is a slight increase of shoppers planning to shop online over last year (36%), 30% plan to shop at department stores this holiday. Twenty-seven percent of consumers will opt for specialty stores while 23% plan to support local small businesses.  

When shoppers are looking for sentimental ways to shower mom with love, remember to "Find It In Florida" and shop local retailers. Supporting local retail helps boost the local economy and invests in your community businesses. Learn more about the "Find It In Florida" program here

For more information on the predictions of the National Retail Federation, visit: https://nrf.com/media-center/press-releases/mothers-day-spending-reach-record-high

ABOUT THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL RETAIL FEDERATION
NRF is the world’s largest retail trade association, representing discount and department stores, home goods and specialty stores, Main Street merchants, grocers, wholesalers, chain restaurants and internet retailers from the United States and more than 45 countries. Retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, supporting one in four U.S. jobs — 42 million working Americans. Contributing $2.6 trillion to annual GDP, retail is a daily barometer for the nation’s economy.  

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Tuesday, 05 April 2022 14:34

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
APRIL 5, 2022
CONTACT: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (202) 680-9262

Tallahassee, FL – Floridians can't hide their egg-citement for Easter as American shoppers plan to spend up to $20.8 billion this year according to the Florida Retail Federation. A recent survey from the National Retail Federation revealed consumers plan to spend on average $167.69 this year.  

 "Floridians are excited about springtime, and shopping for Easter festivities is the perfect way to celebrate," shares Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Association. "When you're preparing your Easter baskets and hiding treats for the annual egg hunt, remember to Find it in Florida. By shopping local during the Easter season, you help support small businesses in your community."

Eighty percent of shoppers will celebrate the Easter holiday. As more than half plan to celebrate in person, the top five holiday activities include: 

  • Cook a holiday meal - 56%
  • Visit family and friends in person - 51% 
  • Go to church in person - 37%
  • Watch TV - 33%
  • Plan an Easter egg hunt - 32%

The impact of inflation has affected shopping behavior. Florida shoppers are looking on the sunny side for their Easter celebrations and focusing on cost savings. Fifty percent of holiday shoppers plan to purchase gifts at discount stores, while 41% will shop at department stores and 35% will purchase Easter eggs and more online.  

Florida shoppers are taking great care not to put all their eggs in one basket this Easter, as 42% of consumers plan to shop at another retailer if items are priced higher than expected at a store. Thirty-one percent said that they will look for an alternate brand or color for the best deal.

Shoppers are springing forward to get all their favorite holiday items, with candy as the top anticipated Easter purchase. The top five items consumers plan to spend on this year include: 

  • Candy - 90%
  • Food - 88%
  • Gifts - 63%
  • Clothing - 49%
  • Decorations - 48%

During this season of spring, when shoppers "Find It In Florida" and shop local retailers, they help boost the local economy and support community businesses. Learn more about the "Find It In Florida" program at the website

For more information on the predictions of the National Retail Federation, visit: https://nrf.com/media-center/press-releases/more-consumers-hunting-bargains-easter

ABOUT THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

ABOUT THE NATIONAL RETAIL FEDERATION
The National Retail Federation, the world’s largest retail trade association, passionately advocates for the people, brands, policies and ideas that help retail thrive. From its headquarters in Washington, D.C., NRF empowers the industry that powers the economy. Retail is the nation’s largest private-sector employer, contributing $3.9 trillion to annual GDP and supporting one in four U.S. jobs – 52 million working Americans. For over a century, NRF has been a voice for every retailer and every retail job, educating, inspiring and communicating the powerful impact retail has on local communities and global economies.

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Tuesday, 08 March 2022 14:46

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 9, 2022
CONTACT: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (202) 680-9262

SB 1534 Passes House Floor in 80-36 Vote; Bill Cracks Down on Organized Crime Rings Targeting Retail Stores Within a Limited Time Period 

Tallahassee, FL – Yesterday, the Florida House passed Senate Bill 1534, Retail Theft, the Senate companion to House legislation sponsored by Representative Chuck Clemons.

The bill applies third-degree and second-degree felonies for individuals or those in consort with one or more persons who commit five or more retail thefts within 30 days. Specifically, SB 1534 creates charges for retail-theft crimes that include multiple retail thefts occurring in a limited period of time in various merchant locations. 

"Consumer and employee safety is the utmost priority for Florida retailers," said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. "Organized retail theft is on the rise and this measure will provide prosecutors with a valuable tool to curtail this criminal activity. We thank Representative Clemons for his leadership in protecting Floridians and fighting against those who seek to profit from retail theft."

Last month the Senate companion SB 1534 by Senator Jim Boyd passed the Senate floor. 

Legislation to crack down on retail crime in Florida is a priority of both Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody and the Florida retail industry.

To read Senate Bill 1534, visit: https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2022/1534

ABOUT THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

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Friday, 04 March 2022 11:08

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 4, 2022
CONTACT: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (202) 680-9262

Senate Bill 944 Passes the Senate Floor, Fights Against Organized Retail Crime Rings Misusing Online Marketplaces to Sell Stolen Goods

Tallahassee, FL – Senate Bill 944, Online Marketplace Transparency, by Senator Dennis Baxley passed the Florida Senate floor on Thursday in a 38-1 vote.

SB 944 implements verification requirements on online marketplaces in Florida to protect consumers from the online sale of fraudulent or stolen goods. Online platforms have been misused by organized crime rings to anonymously sell stolen merchandise and illicit goods to unsuspecting consumers. 

"Thank you, Senator Baxley, for your leadership and commitment to protecting Florida consumers and businesses," said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. "Strengthening transparency measures will not only inform and protect Florida consumers while shopping online, it will also support Florida businesses. Florida retailers who have suffered as a result of the misuse of online marketplace platforms at the hands of organized retail crime rings will receive much-needed relief from this legislation."

The bill seeks to aid consumers requiring the verification of third-party sellers on online marketplaces to help ensure the safe purchase of goods. If passed into Florida statute, the consumer will have a direct line of communication to either the seller or the online marketplace.

The legislation also incorporates data privacy and security measures to protect seller information once the verification process is complete.  

Senate Bill 944 will be sent to the Florida House floor in messages.

ABOUT THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

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Thursday, 03 March 2022 09:36

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 3, 2022
CONTACT: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (202) 680-9262

HB 1209 Codifies Present Florida Vaccine Administration Practices and Expands Health Care Access in Florida

Tallahassee, FL – House Bill 1209 passed the Florida House floor Wednesday in a 114-1 vote. HB 1209 will officially codify the current practice regarding vaccinations throughout retail pharmacies in Florida. 

“We thank Representative Kaylee Tuck and her colleagues in the Florida House for working to ensure that all Floridians have access to needed vaccines," said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. "HB 1209 will allow Florida pharmacists and pharmacy interns and pharmacy technicians to continue to serve our Florida communities through and beyond the pandemic."

The bill amends portions of current state statutes to align with the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness (PREP) Act. Under the present PREP Act, registered pharmacy technicians are authorized to administer vaccines. 

Pharmacy technicians undergo rigorous training per guidelines issued by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and approved by the Accreditation Council for Pharmacy Education. The legislation requires pharmacy technicians to undergo specific training as approved by the Florida Board of Pharmacy in consultation with the Florida Board of Medicine and the Florida Board of Osteopathic Medicine. The completion of the training program will authorize registered pharmacy technicians to continue to administer specified vaccines to those aged 18 years or older.

HB 1209 will now be submitted to the Florida Senate in messages.

ABOUT THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year. 

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Wednesday, 02 March 2022 12:38

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
MARCH 2, 2022
CONTACT:  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. (202) 680-9262

Senate Bill 944 Passed the Senate Committee on Rules

Tallahassee, FL – The Senate Committee on Rules passed Senate Bill 944, Online Marketplace Transparency, by Senator Dennis Baxley on Tuesday.

SB 944 implements verification requirements to protect consumers from the online sale of fraudulent goods in Florida. The bill fights against organized retail crime rings utilizing online marketplaces to sell stolen items. 

"The anonymity of online marketplaces has long been exploited by those who seek to profit from retail theft," said Scott Shalley, president and CEO of the Florida Retail Federation. "Whether shopping online or in a store, Floridians deserve to know that the products they buy are safe and from reputable sources. This legislation will play an important role in protecting consumers and combatting organized retail crime."

Online platforms have been misused by criminals to anonymously sell stolen merchandise and illicit goods to unsuspecting consumers. 

“Criminals are using the anonymity of online marketplace platforms to create the appearance of a legitimate business,” said Senator Baxley. “They create fake accounts. They flood the marketplace with stolen or counterfeit merchandise and take advantage of unsuspecting customers. This bill is meant to modernize the statutes that give our Attorney General the tools to enforce these laws.”

SB 944 helps ensure the safe purchase of quality goods online and aid consumers by requiring the verification of third-party sellers on online marketplaces. The bill requires data privacy and security measures to protect seller information from being utilized or shared once the verification process is complete.

If passed, the bill will also allow the consumer a direct line of communication to either the seller or the online marketplace.

On Tuesday, Grace Lovett, Vice President of Government Affairs of the Florida Retail Federation, waived in support of this legislation to promote safe online marketplaces for consumers and businesses. 

SB 944 and its companion,  HB 1227 by Representative Jackie Toledo, is similar to the  federal legislation known as the Integrity Notification and Fairness in Online Retail Marketplaces (INFORM) for Consumers Act. 

The bill will advance to the Senate floor next for discussion. 

ABOUT  THE FLORIDA RETAIL FEDERATION
The Florida Retail Federation is the statewide trade association representing retailers -- the businesses that sell directly to consumers. Florida retailers provide one out of every five jobs in the state, pay more than $49 billion in wages annually, and collect and remit more than $20 billion in sales taxes for Florida’s government each year.

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