Tax Carnival #87: Star-struck Taxes
Tax cuts, 10 years and counting

Tan tax repeal effort underway

A group of Republican Representatives has introduced a bill to repeal the excise tax on indoor tanning services.

They say they want to get rid of the levy because it's an unfair burden on small businesses.

"The health care law unfairly imposes onerous taxes, like the tan tax, on our nation's business owners and consumers, slowing economic growth and costing jobs," said Rep. Michael Grimm (R-N.Y.), the bill's primary sponsor.

Tanning_bed_client Grimm said 3,100 tanning businesses across the country have closed since 2009. That, said the freshman Representative, is 15 percent of the artificial tan industry.

The main reason, however, behind this latest tanning tax repeal effort is to undermine the health care law.

The tan tax was included in the GOP-hated health care act -- replacing an earlier proposal to tax some cosmetic surgery procedures -- as a way to pay for expanded health coverage.

Grimm's bill, H.R. 2092, is pending in the Ways and Means Committee. It probably won't go anywhere on its own, but it could be attached as an amendment to some future tax bill.

And even if the measure doesn't progress, Grimm and his Republican colleagues have probably already reaped some benefit simply by introducing the legislation.

Their pro-tanning position no doubt will be perceived quite favorably not only politically, but also at a very personal level, by their party's leader, the perpetually-bronzed House Speaker Rep. John Boehner (R-Ohio).

Yep, it never hurts to get on the good side of the guy in charge.

In this instance, though, just be sure it's not on the side that blocks the sun.

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