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Utah Nexus Update

Utah Nexus Update

As we reported last week, Utah resurrected internet sales tax legislation claiming that affiliates constitute nexus in the state and require online retailers to collect and pay state sales taxes. Not only was the House bill resurrected, but so was a similar bill in the Senate.

Utah affiliates and bloggers have stood up against the bills. They attended hearings, spoke on behalf of their peers and have been suiting up and heading to the state capitol each day to sit down and talk with legislators about these bills and how passing them will negatively affect their businesses.

Utah-based member organization AvantLink has been rallying the troops and leading the efforts to fight these bills on the ground. Chad Waite from AvantLink gives us this update:

The Fight on the Ground

The fight against the two Utah Tax Nexus bills is ongoing. The bill from the House will likely be voted on mid-Wednesday morning, [the secondary bill from the senate was voted on and unanimously passed in a last-minute call to vote]. The Utah PMA Coalition is fighting both of these bills on all fronts, however, our efforts are concentrated currently in two places:

1. Exposure/education of the bills and showing a unified voice and opposition. This is being done through a public online petition in which any concerned Utah citizen, affiliate marketer, or business owner can sign and express their opposition. We’re nearing 900 signatures at the time of writing this. It’s filled with heartbreaking stories on the devastation these bills present: http://www.ipetitions.com/petition/vote-no-on-utah-sb182-hb235/

2. Grassroots contact with the elected officials that represent every affiliate. We’re asking each affected affiliate marketer or concerned citizen to find and email/call/tweet/ their local representative and senator. In doing so, they need to share why they’re opposed to the bill, how it will affect their business in a hugely negative way, ask for the rep to vote no, and then share the petition to show momentum.

It’s hard to tell what ground is being gained, but the response and passion from the Utah PMA Coalition has been fantastic and many reps do agree with our position. We’ll know a final outcome in just a few days, but in the meantime, things are moving forward at full speed. In a moment, the second round of open floor time with our local elected leaders is starting, providing chances to express our concern and objection as affiliate marketers and as representatives of the affiliate industry.

If you are a Utah-based affiliate or know anyone in the state who is willing to get behind our cause, tell them to sign and share the above mentioned petition ASAP. This is going to be our biggest key in helping the Utah Legislature see that it’s more than just a few people suggesting these bills be struck down.

— Chad Waite, Marketing Manager, AvantLink

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Rachel is a partner at Rust Built Ventures. She has been an active participant in the affiliate marketing industry since the late 90's with executive leadership roles at KowaBunga!, Lurn & FMTC. Her advice and views have been shared in FeedFront multiple times as well as from the stage at Affiliate Summit.

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