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Adam Putnam Announces Tax-Cutting, Other Initiatives in Florida Energy Summit Address

Commissioner of Agriculture and Consumer Services Adam Putnam announced Monday he will propose cutting in half the sales tax Florida businesses pay for electricity, a measure that will save them $250 million to innovate, expand and develop.

Speaking to some 450 participants at the Florida Eenergy Summit in Orlando Monday morning, Putnam said businesses now pay sales tax at a higher rate than residential users.

He will also propose the other half of the savings be redirected to PECO, "a program that now is broke." PECO is the primary source of energy funding for teaching and research in Florida.

Putnam also said he wants taxes cut for people who buy "energy star" appliances. "I want to have a tax holiday weekend for people who purchase these," he said. "We know this program works." The energy star program has saved Florida 7.6 million kilowatt hours.

Putnam told participants he also will propose investing up to $4 million in matching funds for innovative, clean energy ideas. It's a program that won't cost, he said, because it will be paid for through "recycled" money -- money returned when funded ideas didn't work out.

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