Governor kicks off tax cut tour in Fort Myers
When D3 Glass opened three years ago, the family-owned business in Naples employed eight family members and five others.
Today, the business specializing in the fabrication and tempering of flat glass products has produced 57 jobs, encompassing two companies and extending its reach from Marco Island to Tampa and Orlando.
Gov. Rick Scott chose the business location to kick off his “Keep Florida Working” Tax Cut victory tour Monday to celebrate his touted $400 million-plus in tax cuts for Florida families.
Fort Myers was the first of seven stops the governor had planned throughout the state Monday, all of them at small, growing businesses.
Keith William Daubmann, co-owner at D3, said his company was contacted by the Chamber of Commerce about having the governor visit. Even though it required much last-minute preparation, Daubmann jumped at the chance.
“We gave our guys a lot of overtime to help loosen the load for today,” Daubmann said. “I’m excited for the governor to see what we’re doing, which has been helped by some of the legislation he’s put in place.”
Scott, speaking with a multitude of sign-waving supporters in the background, praised the company while repeating his mantra of the citizens knowing how to spend their money better than government.
“Nobody in my family said they’d like somebody to raise their taxes. They always thought taxes were too high,” Scott said. “Since 2010 we’ve cut taxes 40 times. This year we’re cutting taxes $400 million.”
Scott said more than $200 million in cuts went toward cell phones and cable and satellite TV bills, $40 million in taxes on college textbooks for one year, and more than $67 million on the 10-day back-to-school tax holiday.
“This is all to get more jobs. When companies like D3 come here, they sell more glass and create more jobs,” Scott said. “Every time we cut taxes we put money into business and create more jobs.”
Scott said the state has created 879,000 jobs under his watch and more than 270,000 more jobs per year for the next four years.
Lee County Commissioner Brian Hamman praised the state legislature and said the tour was a culmination of a great team effort.
“We have great state legislators who work hard to keep taxes low and spend money wisely at the state level,” Hamman said. “We have followed that same formula and have gone a step further by expediting the permit processes because we know time is money when you’re trying to get your business open.”
Afterward, Scott said he would go through the budget line by line as July 1 draws near, making sure all projects, including the local ones, are good for the state as a whole.
When asked if all these tax cuts would hurt other programs down the line, Scott focused on what the state was adding on to.
“I walked in with a $4 billion deficit. Now we have a $1 billion surplus because we have more jobs, housing prices are up, so we have record spending on K-12 education and for the environment,” Scott said. “This state is heading in the right direction.”
Regarding the continuing saga of the U.S. Sugar land acquisition, Scott said he has continued to do his part in restoring the Everglades.
“We’ve done record funding for the Everglades. We did the settlement over the Everglades with the federal government, we funded C-43 and C-44, the Kissimmee River project; that’s where my focus is,” Scott said.