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Senators Klobuchar & Franken Support E-Fairness

Marketplace Fairness Test Vote Today on Senate Floor

Yesterday the U.S. Senate began discussing amending the Marketplace Fairness Act (e-fairness) to a federal budget bill. Both Senators Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken spoke in favor of the amendment, mentioning several Minnesota Retailers Association (MnRA) members including Creative Kidstuff, the Uff-Da Shop, Target, Best Buy, and Thrifty White Pharmacy.

As of the time of this post, the U.S. Senate had just begun voting on various amendments, and the status of the Marketplace Fairness Act amendment was not yet determined.  It is anticipated that amendments would be voted on until as late as midnight Friday.

The effort to add the Marketplace Fairness Act to the federal budget proposal is important because it provides a look at the status of potential votes on the measure.  If enough Senators vote in favor on the amendment, it signals there may be sufficient support to pass the Marketplace Fairness Act.

Click here to read Senator Klobuchar's press release highlighting comments on the Marketplace Fairness Act.     

Click here to read a press release from Senator Franken's office relative to yesterday's comments.

Click here to read a National Retail Federation article on today's vote.  

Thank you to the many MnRA members who responded to Thursday's Retail Action Alert requesting outreach to Senators Klobuchar and Franken.  Your voice makes a difference!.

MnRA supports the federal Marketplace Fairness Act.

Will Consumers Show Retailers Valentine's Love?

3.2% Increase in 2013 Valentine's Sales Predicted

Love is in the air, but will consumers show it to retailers on Valentine's Day?

According to research by IBISWorld, traditional Valentine's Day gifts such as candy and flowers will lead a 3.2 percent increase in holiday-related sales this year. In addition, Valentine's traveling, jewelry, and dining out will also beat last year's numbers.

The report says average consumer spending for Valentine's gifts will be $134.08, up slightly from last year's $133.99.

Based on Valentine's Day falling on a Thursday, the forecast for flower sales are especially strong. However, citing flat consumer confidence and higher payroll taxes, spending on bigger ticket items may be flat or lower.

Greeting cards, clothing, and lingerie are anticipated to see the least amount of growth in sales this Valentine's Day holiday.

Click here to read the IBISWorld summary of 2013 Valentines forecast (pdf).

Governor Dayton's Sales Tax Plan Details

Confused on what would be taxed, what would be exempt, and other sales tax reductions?

This past Tuesday, Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton released his comprehensive budget proposal. Changes to the sales tax system that would deeply impact Minnesota retailers are a cornerstone of the Governor's budget. 
MnRA's has been on record thanking the Governor for the inclusion of E-Fairness in his proposal, as well as endorsing the concept of lowering Minnesota's sales tax rate, but is concerned about several other sales tax provisions that would have a negative impact on retailers, including expanding the sales tax to clothing items selling for $100 or more and taxes on retail services.

Confused on what would be taxed, what would be exempt, and other sales tax reductions?

Click below to see explanations of each as released Thursday by Minnesota's Management and Budget Office.
EXPANDED: Click here to see sales taxes expanded under Dayton's plan.
EXEMPTED: Click here to see sales tax exemptions under Dayton's plan.
REDUCED: Click here to see sales tax reductions under Dayton's plan.
If you have any questions please contact MnRA's Government Relations Director, Rochelle Westlund, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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