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Florida Pushes for Data Center Tax Exemptions

Florida Pushes for Data Center Tax Exemptions

Data centers are expanding to the state of Florida.  A main reason Floridians are gearing their organizations towards data centers is because they have a large amount of data to handle and the state is offering tax exemptions.

The governor of Florida, Rick Scott, is standing by the push towards data centers in the state.  He recently signed a budget bill for the upcoming year supporting the introduction of data centers in the state.

Along with the state budget to assist data centers, other tax reliefs have been set in place by the state to stimulate data centers.  Two taxes data centers will be relieved of include sales tax and use tax for the equipment and other assets, such as infrastructure, used during to operate the data center.  By eliminating these taxes, the state hopes data centers will be more able to begin their operations to serve the state.

What Insiders Are Saying.

After the state signed the 2017-2018 budget, a clear path for data centers was revealed.  Professionals in the data center industry are expecting to see positive changes soon.

The professionals of the data center industry played a main role in encouraging the state of Florida to pass a budget, which was conducive to data centers.  Without the knowledge and drive of the professionals, the state legislatures may not have given data centers a chance.  Therefore, the data center professionals made it their mission to prove to the state their data center efforts were a force that could help the economy of Florida.

Sales Tax Exemption

As mentioned, part of the benefits data centers will receive from the state includes sales tax exemptions.  However, the state has established criteria to be able to be a part of the sales tax exemption for data centers.  The following points cover the significant criteria:

  • A capital investment of $150 million or greater towards a data center after July 1, 2017.
  • The data center must be able to handle 15MW or greater when operating. If the data center has tenants, then the tenants must operate at 1MW or greater.
  • The data centers must be located within the state of Florida.
  • Expenses may not be exempt under the sales tax exemption depending on the time of acquisition.

Aside from establishing the criteria, the state of Florida will also review the sales tax exemption for data centers.  When they review the data centers periodically, the legislatures will point out any discrepancies to the Florida Department of Revenue.

For organizations in Florida with established data centers, the sales tax exemption will not apply.  Therefore, the upcoming competition will hold a competitive advantage over the established data centers, which could threaten their existence by limiting their ability to interest viable tenants.

Custom Power Rates

In addition to the sales tax exemption, data centers will benefit from custom power rates.

The custom power rates for data centers were made possible by lobby from key economic figures in Florida, which included a power company executive in Florida.  By encouraging the custom power rates, the state of Florida can assist customers with larger power demands, such as the bigger industries.

The concept of providing custom power rates is not new, since the incentive was set in place a few years ago.  From the initiation of the incentive, customers with larger power needs have been benefiting.  Therefore, the state sees the continuation of the incentive to data centers as a step in the right direction to help the centers afford their power rates.

Steps Forward

Before Florida, many other states in the country have taken steps to incorporate data centers into their states economy through a harmonious relationship.

The data centers established have helped balance areas where economic hardship was taking over.  Since the establishment of the data centers did not take as much investment from the states as other areas of the budget, the states were able to provide incentives to help the data centers grow.  By doing so, the data centers have more advanced technologies and securities to protect their customers.

Now, the state of Florida, including the governor and the state legislatures, are beginning to take on their responsibilities in helping data centers grow to protect critical data of organizations in their state.   Still, the budget remains a competitive platform, and the state must decide how to disperse the funds the state has for economic development.

Other information about how the state of Florida is encouraging the development of data centers in the state can be reviewed in the state legislatures decision to provide the tax exemptions to new data centers established in Florida, which meet the outlined criteria.

DCS Data Centers provides quality Data Center design-build services throughout the United States and has an office located in Florida. Contact DCS for more information about how we can assist your business in taking advantage of Florida’s new tax exemptions.



Categories: Blog, Data Centers