Florida Governor begins trip aimed at poaching Connecticut business

Florida Governor Rick Scott talks with the media as he courts Connecticut businesses to move to Florida (WTNH / Kent Pierce)

HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH) – Florida Governor Rick Scott kicked off his trip to Connecticut Monday. Scott came to Norwalk, pitching his state as a better climate for business than Connecticut. He came to the same place two years ago with the same pitch, and he says it worked. More people are moving from Connecticut to Florida than to anywhere else.

There are three big advantages businesses have in Florida, according to the republican governor. There is no personal income tax, no estate tax, and Florida is a right to work state, so unions don’t have the same strength and impact that they do here. Scott says that translates into an environment that is much friendlier to business, and as a result, more an more businesses are moving to the sunshine state.

Related: Florida Governor to visit state to recruit Connecticut businesses to move

“Our job growth rate is 3%, Connecticut’s is 1.1%. We’ve got the second lowest per capita taxes in the country,”Scott said. “Your taxes are more than double per person than Florida’s. What are you getting for it?”

Governor Malloy’s office issued a response to Governor Scott. It reads, in part, “if he’s expecting anyone in Connecticut to buy what he’s selling, he’s better off saving his taxpayers the cost of the trip and staying home.”

The reason Connecticut is dealing with huge budget deficits is, there is less tax revenue coming in, so the state desperately needs businesses to stay here, and rich business owners to live here and pay taxes.

I think more people from Connecticut have left Connecticut and moved down to Florida than any place else in the country.. So I’m gonna go up there, meet with a variety of businesses… and see if I can recruit them to come down here and create more jobs for Florida families

Gov. Rick Scott, (R) Florida

Governor Malloy’s office says Connecticut is better run with better education than Florida. Connecticut’s state police union put out a statement pointing out the Florida Highway Patrol is the lowest paid state police unit in the country, and that one of those troopers was just killed and Governor Scott is not in Florida today to meet with his family.

Scott did not have any hard numbers about how many businesses left Connecticut for Florida since his visit two years ago, but anecdotally, a financial planner who lived in Fairfield for 10 years said he just moved to Florida. Partly for the weather, but mostly for the taxes, and he advises his clients to do the same.

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