A coalition of businesses is gearing up for a fight over Maryland’s first-in-the-nation attempt to tax online advertising, which lawmakers passed earlier this year to fund education by taxing Big Tech.
(TNS) — A coalition of businesses is gearing up for a fight in January over Maryland’s first-in-the-nation attempt to levy a tax on online advertising.
A coalition calling itself Marylanders for Tax Fairness is starting a push against the tax two months before lawmakers will have to make their decision on the veto. The coalition will launch a website and ad campaign Tuesday.
The coalition’s members call the tax shortsighted and deeply flawed. And they say the costs will be passed on to Marylanders, as businesses charge higher prices to cover their increased cost of advertising.
“This is a bad time for a bad idea …
The idea behind the tax was to hit big technology companies that place ads that follow people around as they browse websites and click through apps such as Google and Facebook.
The tax would apply to companies based on how much money they make from digital ads that
Most of the revenue would go to public schools. The tax has the potential of raising up to $250 million per year, according to a nonpartisan analysis.
“I just don’t see why
But coalition members — and the governor — argue small businesses would bear the brunt of the cost.
Hogan, in a veto letter sent to legislative leaders, called the bill “misguided” and said it would raise costs on Marylanders at a time when many are struggling financially.
“With our state in the midst of a pandemic and economic crash, and just beginning on our road to recovery, it would be unconscionable to raise taxes and fees now,” Hogan wrote
“This tax affects companies only making $100 million or more a year on the free exploitation of Marylanders' personal and private data,” Ferguson said. “We have, and will continue to stand side by side with small businesses to protect them from being taken advantage of by multinational corporations.”
Some have raised questions about whether the tax would withstand legal challenges. They’ve cited the federal Internet Tax Freedom Act, which bans discriminatory taxes on e-commerce; the federal Commerce Clause, which gives
The coalition pushing against the digital ad tax in
The tax on digital advertising was coupled with increasing tobacco taxes and applying taxes to electronic nicotine and vaping products for the first time. Because they’re in the same bill, both sets of taxes were vetoed by Hogan and the fate of both rests now with the
The General Assembly’s session is scheduled to start
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