By CLA staff | Feb 17, 2010
by Brian Wallace, CLA President and CEO
The Coin Laundry Association has adopted the protection of the state sales tax exemptions as its top legislative priority over the past 30 years. In just the last 10 years, the CLA has engaged lobbyists in this effort in Michigan, Maine, Florida, Arkansas, Washington, New Jersey, and now Illinois and Kentucky. Hiring of a lobbyist is usually the last step in the process, which begins with legislative monitoring.
The CLA tracks all bills in all 50 states, looking for any adverse legislation. We also monitor all federal legislation as well as all state and federal regulatory activity looking for any movement that could be detrimental to our industry. Between legislative monitoring and the engagement of lobbyists, the CLA has spent nearly $250,000 in the past decade to protect the industry in this way.
For 2010, we will be launching a national campaign to raise awareness and solicit donations from the industry to support our efforts to protect the sales tax exemptions. You can imagine that this is an expensive effort and the CLA does not have the budget to fund lobbyists on its own.
For those of you in directly affected states, I encourage you to respond to upcoming solicitations for donations. For those of you in states not yet affected, please consider contributing to this effort by joining the association and/or making a donation to our efforts.
There is strength in numbers and, while this will be a particularly challenging period for our industry, it is time to band together and protect our businesses. Remember, the average laundry owner will be paying at least $8,000 to $12,000 per store per year in sales tax to their respective states if the exemption is lost.