ACMA Washington Alert House Votes to Make Internet Tax Freedom Act Permanent; Senate Looks to Attach MFA Passage
Dear Catalog Industry Executive:
Yesterday, the House Judiciary Committee passed a permanent extension of the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA), which prevents any new taxes for Internet access. The current tax moratorium, renewed annually but scheduled to expire on November 1st, was enacted 16 years ago. Making this important legislation permanent is very good news. But shortly after the bill’s passage, Senator Mike Enzi (R-WY) along with MFA champion Dick Durbin (D-IL) and others introduced a bill that marries the ITFA with the Senate-passed Marketplace Fairness Act (MFA), effectively holding ITFA’s passage “hostage” unless their MFA, as passed last year, gets tagged onto it.
The process is not unlike what the Senate did in spring of 2013 when it rushed through the hastily drawn up MFA with no deliberation at the Committee level. The Senate is again to aiming to use a legislative trick to get MFA hastily passed without full consideration and support.
While Senate leadership plays tricks with MFA, the House is making progress to resolve the issue without the problems inherent in MFA. The Senate action effectively preempts the lower chamber’s deliberation and progress.
Today, True Simplification of Taxation (TruST), the coalition cofounded by ACMA in 2012, sent a letter (found here) to Senate Majority Leader Reid and Minority Leader McConnell urging them to allow the thorough debate currently taking place in the House to continue enabling a truly fair remote sales tax collection law to be passed.
TruST and ACMA will be monitoring this development closely. We wanted to put the industry on alert, so executives will take quick action should we need to whip up opposition to the merging of ITFA and MFA in the few remaining legislative days of the 113th Congress. It is important to understand that folks are frustrated that Senate leadership is trying to jam this bill through again, especially when the House is trying to find a meaningful alternative.
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