• Let's Talk Business

    Friday, September 22, 2023
    St. Johns County Chamber of Commerce Urges City Commission to Pause Efforts on New Nightlife Ordinance

    Chamber President/CEO Isabelle Renault is calling on the St. Augustine City Commission to pause efforts to create a new nightlife ordinance until an economic impact study recommended by its own consultant, the Responsible Hospitality Institute (“RHI”), is undertaken. “Without a complete understanding of the potential negative effects that could result for St. Augustine’s hospitality and tourism businesses, we urge the City Commission to take a step back and conduct the study that was recommended by both its

    Jamie Johnson

    Tuesday, June 27, 2023
    A Win for Essential Workers: Essential Worker Housing Update

    On June 20, the SJC Board of County Commissioners approved a heavily modified version of the new Workforce Housing Ordinance, which is designed to encourage builders to build and sell nearly 300 new homes at no more than $260,000 in the next few years. The Chamber has been actively involved with the County Commission and the NE Florida Builders Association (the original sponsors) helping to modify the original proposed ordinance so that more of our essential workers (public safety, first responders, nurses,

    Bob Porter

    Tuesday, June 20, 2023
    St. Johns County Receives $59 Million from State of Florida

    St. Johns County announced it received $59 million in appropriations from the State of Florida after Governor Ron DeSantis signed the Fiscal Year 2023-24 budget into law. It is the largest amount of state appropriations the St. Johns County government has ever received and surpasses the $12.4 million appropriated last year.

    St. Johns County Government

    Wednesday, April 26, 2023
    Legislative Update #3

    The Legislature is heading into its final weeks of the 2023 Session which is scheduled to end on May 5. All attention has now turned to finalizing the 2023-2024 budget which must be signed into law no later than June 30. In this update, we explore the major affordable housing initiative signed into law by the Governor last month; the potential for an additional cut in the sales tax on commercial rents; Visit Florida/Enterprise Florida attacks, and finally, the state of play on Florida’s 2023-2024 budget.

    Bob Porter

    Monday, April 3, 2023
    Legislative Update - Live Local, Civil Tort, and more

    The Legislature has been in Session for less than one month and they are moving through their agenda at record speed. In this update, we explore the major affordable housing initiative signed into law by the Governor last week; a significant civil Tort Reform overhaul; Visit Florida/local Tourism Development attacks, and finally, the state of Florida’s 2023-2024 budget, which interestingly is the only Constitutionally mandated action by the Legislature each year.

    Bob Porter

    Friday, March 17, 2023
    Legislative Update - March 17, 2023

    The Florida Legislature began its 60-day 2023 Legislative Session on March 7 with a State of the State address by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis and speeches by Florida House Speaker Paul Renner and Florida Senate President Kathleen Passidomo outlining their goals. Aside from their stated intention to move quickly forward with gun control, abortion, transgender and other issues, the Legislature is expected to move quickly on issues of importance to the business community. Click here for an update on the

    Bob Porter

    Thursday, February 16, 2023
    Legislature Sends Additional $700M in Hurricane Relief to Gov. DeSantis

    Another $700 million is soon on the way for communities recovering from Hurricanes Ian and Nicole. Last week, the Legislature sent a bill (SB 2B) to Gov. Ron DeSantis that would establish an emergency bridge loan fund and replenish the state’s catastrophe fund.

    Bob Porter

    Thursday, January 26, 2023
    Leadership St. Johns Class of 2023 Starts the New Year

    The 24 members of the Class of 2023 embarked on their eight-month journey on the road to servant leadership this weekend. Class members attended a 2-day offsite retreat at the Guy Harvey Resort in St. Augustine Beach.

    Bob Porter

    Thursday, January 26, 2023
    Bringing St. Johns County Workers Home

    Last summer, the Northeast Florida Builders Association approached the Chamber with a proposal to address parts of this impending housing “crisis” facing SJC. Since then, the Chamber’s Essential Worker Housing Coalition has worked to refine the builder’s proposal to provide housing for our targeted employees.

    Bob Porter

    Friday, December 30, 2022
    Public Policy Outlook 2023

    Expect to see a full schedule of business-related legislation this spring as the State Legislature prepares for the 2023 Session which runs from March 7 – May 5 in Tallahassee. Big ticket issues such as a continuation of the property insurance legislative review, Visit Florida funding, affordable workforce housing, and funding for numerous NE Florida hurricane relief and emergency resilience will be at the forefront. Why are these issues important to Chamber members?

    Bob Porter