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Sen. Nelson files tax-relief bill to help hurricane victims

Sen. Bill Nelson visits the Emergency Operations Center (File photo){ }

U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson filed legislation Tuesday to provide some much needed tax relief to individuals and small businesses hit by hurricanes Irma and Maria, the Senate announced.

One of the groups Nelson’s bill is targeting are Florida’s citrus growers who suffered devastating losses as a result of Hurricane Irma. Some experts estimate that as much as 70 percent of Florida’s citrus crop was lost due to the storm, with some growers losing as much as 90 percent of their crop.

If approved, Nelson's bill would allow Florida's growers to immediately deduct post-storm cleanup costs from their taxes, including removing and replanting downed trees.

“Florida’s citrus growers took a devastating hit from Hurricane Irma and we need to do everything we can to help this vital part of Florida’s economy,” Nelson said.

The bill would also allow individuals and businesses to create tax-free saving accounts to help cover expenses for future disasters.

The legislation is heading to the Senate Finance Committee for consideration.

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