Wednesday, November 09, 2011

Obama's Tax on Christmas Trees

Is there anything Obama won't tax?
Obama Couldn’t Wait: His New Christmas Tree Tax
David S. Addington
Heritage Foundation
November 8, 2011

President Obama’s Agriculture Department today announced that it will impose a new 15-cent charge on all fresh Christmas trees—the Christmas Tree Tax—to support a new Federal program to improve the image and marketing of Christmas trees.

In the Federal Register of November 8, 2011, Acting Administrator of Agricultural Marketing David R. Shipman announced that the Secretary of Agriculture will appoint a Christmas Tree Promotion Board. The purpose of the Board is to run a “program of promotion, research, evaluation, and information designed to strengthen the Christmas tree industry’s position in the marketplace; maintain and expend existing markets for Christmas trees; and to carry out programs, plans, and projects designed to provide maximum benefits to the Christmas tree industry” (7 CFR 1214.46(n)). And the program of “information” is to include efforts to “enhance the image of Christmas trees and the Christmas tree industry in the United States” (7 CFR 1214.10).

To pay for the new Federal Christmas tree image improvement and marketing program, the Department of Agriculture imposed a 15-cent fee on all sales of fresh Christmas trees by sellers of more than 500 trees per year (7 CFR 1214.52). And, of course, the Christmas tree sellers are free to pass along the 15-cent Federal fee to consumers who buy their Christmas trees.
In response to outrage over this latest money grab, officials at the Obama White House put out a statement saying that the tax would be delayed. Not terminated, just delayed.

Like so many other taxes and other negative consequences of Obama's policies this tax on Christmas will have to wait until after the 2012 election. Then WATCH OUT!


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