Washington ASTA Members:
We wanted to update you on where things stand in Olympia. As you may remember, the House Democrat’s budget legislation, House Bill 2224, would repeal the preferential business and occupation (B&O) tax rate of 0.275 percent on travel agency commissions and subject that income to the general rate of 1.8 percent – a six-fold increase that will cost agents and tour operators $14.3 million over two years. The Senate budget keeps the 0.275 percent rate intact, and legislators are currently negotiating over the shape of the final budget in advance of the legislature’s scheduled April 26 adjournment. (For more background, see our March 31 action alert.)
If we are to avoid at least $14 million in new taxes being levied on our industry, your legislators need to hear from you today.
Please take a few minutes to either send an email to your state representative/senator, or to make a phone call:
If you are one of the 73 ASTA members who sent a total of 158 messages in response to our last alert, we thank you. This is a good start but more work is needed to derail this tax increase.
Note that this request is not limited to ASTA members or agency owners/managers. We ask that you forward it to your staff and/or your peers with a request that they participate in the process. (Non-members should be reminded that travel agent advocacy is job #1 for ASTA and they should join so we can keep fighting these fights.)
The window for action is closing fast… ACT NOW!
If you have any questions, contact headquarters or Robert Roach, ASTA Pacific Northwest Chapter President (email@example.com).