On March 16th, 2021, the IIDA South Florida Advocacy Committee hosted a live Q+A session with Dave J. Roberts from Nortelus Roberts Group, IIDA’s Florida Interior Design lobbyist. During the session, Dave discussed five new bills in the Florida Legislature that could affect interior design business owners in our state. If you’re interested in listening to this session, check it out on the IIDA SFC YouTube channel. Here are the top four bills summarized by Dave:
Repeal of Occupational Regulatory Programs
The primary legislation that interior designers were concerned with was the sunset review legislation - SB 344 and HB 471 “Legislative Review of Occupational Regulations''. These bills would establish a schedule for the systematic review of occupational regulatory programs. The statue that regulates interior designers would be repealed on July 1st, 2025 unless renewed by the Legislature. Luckily, both bills died with only one committee hearing of the Senate bill and no committee hearing of the House version!
Electronic Building Submissions
A few other bills that were followed that affected the interior design industry were HB 667 “Building Inspections”. This bill was by Rep. James Mooney, Jr. (R-Key West) which was approved by the full House by unanimous vote (118-0) on April 21 st and has been sent to the Senate for their consideration. This bill requires local building enforcement agencies to allow requests for inspections to be submitted electronically. The accepted methods of electronic submission include e-mail, an electronic fill-in form available on the building department’s website or a third-party submission software, or a form that can be downloaded on a mobile device.
Out-of-state Sales Tax Collection
SB 50 was also signed into law on Monday, April 19th by Gov. Ron DeSantis. The bill requires out-of-state retailers and marketplace providers with no physical presence in Florida to collect the state’s sales tax on sales of taxable items delivered to purchasers in Florida if the out-of-state retailer or marketplace provider makes a substantial number of sales in Florida. In the bill, a substantial number of sales means conducting any number of taxable remote sales in an amount exceeding $100,000 during the previous calendar year.
Great news for Interior Designers as the 2021 legislative session ended with no legislation adversely affecting our profession! As the upcoming Vice President of Advocacy for the South Florida IIDA Chapter, I’m responsible for understanding new bills that directly influence our industry.But knowledge is useless without action, so the most important aspect of my role is educating others to advocate for our profession.
For further information, here are the websites for both the House and Senate bills:
Florida House of Representatives - www.MyFloridaHouse.gov
Florida Senate - www.FLSenate.gov