Protect Interchange in Florida

Protect Florida’s consumers – vote NO on SB 564 and HB 677!

If enacted, SB 564 and HB 677 would prohibit the levying of any portion of the merchant discount fee including interchange, on the sales tax portion of a credit or debit card transaction.

In plain English – point of sale terminals would need to be completely overhauled to exclude sales tax from the current interchange calculation when credit or debit cards are used.

How would it work?

This change in payment policy would lead to increased costs, not only to financial institutions like credit unions and community banks, but to Florida’s small businesses.

The technology required to calculate interchange costs on individual taxable items will be much more complicated than the current interchange and does not currently exist.

There is no doubt that large retailers would likely be able to afford these specialized systems at a minimal cost, but our mom-and-pop shops on Main Street will be burdened with additional costs that could lead stores to stop accepting card payments or worse, close their businesses.

Invasion of privacy?

Calculating interchange rates and merchant discount fees based on individual items is an invasion of Floridians’ privacy and the millions of visitors who visit the Sunshine State every year. Calculating interchange fees based on the purchases for an individual item will make it possible for others to see where people are spending their money. No one wants ‘big brother’ peeking at their purchases whether it’s a new pair of shoes, amusement park passes or a donation to your favorite political cause. Floridians deserve better.

Vote NO on SB 564 and HB 677!

What is interchange?

Consumers across the country rely on credit and debit cards to make life happen, from paying for groceries to covering emergency car repairs or medical expenses. Accepted nearly everywhere, credit and debit cards offer robust security, fraud protection and access to credit that may not be otherwise available. Interchange fees, which are only a fraction of a cent per dollar transacted, make this possible. Interchange fees cover the cost of fraud detection, credit monitoring, and fraudulent purchase protection benefiting both consumers and merchants.

Finally, financial institutions depend on interchange income to both protect consumers from fraud and cover any losses as a result of merchant data breaches. Credit unions often utilize card programs to extend much needed credit to low-income members who may not qualify for other financial tools. Needlessly upending the interchange system will make it harder for Floridians to access the funds they may need to keep food on their table or gas in their tank.