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Home   Membership   Expos   Publications   Knowledge Center   Education   Coffee Service   Gov. Affairs Feb. 22, 2013
 
 
 


Small business tax credit for equipment upgrade to comply with ADA
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Vending Operators that qualify as small businesses under the IRS code and have upgraded equipment to comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act rules may be entitled to a tax credit/deduction. To assist small businesses in compliance with the ADA, the Internal Revenue Service Code includes a Disabled Access Credit (Section 44) for businesses with 30 or fewer full-time employees or with total revenues of $1 million or less in the previous tax year. Qualified Small Businesses may qualify for a tax credit/deduction for eligible access expenditures including amounts paid or incurred to acquire or modify equipment or devices for individuals with disabilities. NAMA recommends that you consult with your accountant for further clarification or qualification. The information in this correspondence provides general guidance in applying tax credits and deductions. This should not be construed as providing financial advice, tax advice and/or rendering advice on tax return preparation. Consult your tax adviser to best assess your potential savings and to confirm the code interpretations.


USDA proposal for implementation of Healthy Hunger-Free Kids Act in schools
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On Feb. 1, the United States Department of Agriculture issued proposed rules that would enact nutrition standards for "competitive" foods not included in the official school meal. The rules are a result of the 2010 Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act. The rules would apply to any school, public or private, that participates in the National School Lunch Program and the School Breakfast Program. The proposed changes are intended to improve the health and well-being of the nation's children, increase consumption of healthful foods during the school day and create an environment that reinforces the development of healthy eating habits. Click here to read more on these proposed rules. For further information, please contact Eric Dell edell@vending.org.


Federal rules for calorie content labeling of food sold in vending machines have not been released
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NO FEDERAL REQUIREMENT IS IN EFFECT AT THIS TIME
The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, includes language that requires any business which owns or operates 20 or more vending machines to disclose the caloric content of vended food and beverage products prior to the point of sale. It requires the Secretary (and by designation, the FDA) to establish requirements for calorie labeling of article for food sold from covered vending machines. The FDA HAS NOT YET RELEASED THE RULE FOR COMPLIANCE. Once the rule is released, there will likely be a time period for compliance. NAMA will keep you informed of any information and details as they are released. As previously stated, there is no federal requirement in effect at this time. For further information, please contact Eric Dell at edell@vending.org.




California: Bill regarding vended foods on state property
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AB 459 has been introduced, which would require at least 50 percent of the food in vending machines on state property to meet accepted nutritional guidelines by Jan. 1, 2015, then 75 percent by 2015 and 100 percent by 2017. The bill would also require 100 percent of beverages in vending machines to meet those guidelines by Jan. 1, 2016. NAMA and the California Automatic Vending Council will closely monitor and advise members of activity and action taken on this legislation. For more information, please contact Sandy Larson at slarson@vending.org.


Massachusetts: Healthy choices in vending machines on state property
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MA House Bill 2011, which relates to expanding access to healthy food choices in vending machines on state property, was introduced on Feb. 18. NAMA and the Massachusetts Vending Association will monitor and keep members informed of the progress of this legislation. For more information contact Pam Gilbert at pgilbert@vending.org.


Michigan: Motor carrier exemption
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As previously reported, P.A. 231 of 2012, exempted commercial motor vehicles under 26,000 GVW operating in intrastate commerce, from certain state regulations. The most significant exemptions for industry members include the costly annual inspections, and the extensive recordkeeping required to maintain the drivers' vehicle logbooks. The Michigan Distributors and Vendors Association has repeatedly requested any documentation or information regarding this change in the law from the Michigan Department of Transportation and the Michigan State Police. The concern is that local law enforcement is not aware of the change. Recently a vending company truck was ticketed for failing to have the annual inspection. The charge will eventually be dismissed, but will require the company's time and resources to complete. MDVA will continue to work with contacts at MDOT and MSP to get an official notice. It may be helpful to have a copy of the new law in affected vehicles. Please click here for a copy of the law. For more information, contact Pam Gilbert at pgilbert@vending.org.


Missouri: Proposed sales tax increase to fund transportation needs
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In Missouri, both the House and Senate Transportation Committees heard a bill that would send voters a 1-cent sales tax increase proposal, which would be dedicated to transportation needs across the state. The bill sponsors explained that funding for the Department of Transportation has fallen from $1.2 billion to just under $700 million and that the gas tax would have to be raised by 40 cents to cover costs, which is a non-starter. If the 1-cent sales tax is approved by voters, it would raise all sales tax with the exception of food, medicine and gas, and would expire after 10 years. For additional information, contact Kim Radulski at kradulski@vending.org@vending.org.


Ohio: Governor proposes taxing 82 additional services
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Gov. John Kasich has proposed broadening the state's sales tax to include 82 currently untaxed services. The sales-tax expansion would generate an estimated $4.5 billion in additional revenue. For more information, contact Pam Gilbert at pgilbert@vending.org@vending.org.


Virginia: Bill to tax wholesale fuel instead of retail motor fuel
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Virginia legislators have agreed to a proposal to convert the state's 17.5 cents per gallon motor fuels tax to a wholesale tax on gas. After a full vote the bill will head to Gov. Bob McDonnell for his signature. The transportation plan would be used to pay for road repairs and to fund new transportation projects. The plan would eliminate the 17.5 cents-per-gallon gas tax and replace it with a 3.5 percent tax on wholesale gasoline (6 percent for wholesale diesel). It is estimated to raise $870 million a year. The plan would also increase the states sales tax from the current 5 percent to 5.3 percent, and would include a $100 annual fee for owners of alternative fuel vehicles. In addition, the title tax on cars would increase from 3 percent to 4 percent. For more information contact Mary Lou Monaghan at mmonaghan@vending.org@vending.org.


Virginia: Fairfax County proposal to remove sodas from school vending machines
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Fairfax County School Board member Ryan McElveen is leading an effort to remove soda sales in schools in his county, which makes up the largest school district in Virginia (156,000 students). During the 2011-12 school year, over 430,000 soft drinks were sold from vending machines in school facilities, according to the Fairfax County Public School system. If all 430,000 sodas were purchased by students, the average consumption rate would be less than one soft drink per student a month. Vending machines are only turned on after school hours, and during weekends and holidays, according to school officials. About 70 percent of sodas sold through vending machines in schools are regular soft drinks. The other 30 percent are diet or zero calorie drinks. Schools receive 50 percent of the profits from vending machines as part of a profit agreement with the vending operator. In fiscal 2012, the schools received $114,604, which included $82,682 from the schools' share of soda sale profits and $31,976 donated from Food and Nutrition Services. McElveen reports the next step will include community input and discussions with fellow School Board members. School officials are currently reviewing food services within the school system. For more information, contact Sheree Edwards at sedwards@vending.org@vending.org.


Virginia: Proposes to mint its own currency
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The Virginia House of Delegates has passed a bill to create a new joint subcommittee made up of lawmakers, plus two outside experts, to "study the feasibility of a metallic-based monetary unit." The committee could spend up to $17,440 and would present its recommendations before the 2014 legislative session. Several versions of this bill have been around since 2011. The bill moves to the Senate next, where it is unlikely to pass. For more information, contact Sheree Edwards at sedwards@vending.org@vending.org.


West Virginia: Bill to ban soda in public schools loses 2 Republican sponsors
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A bipartisan bill that would ban the sale of sweetened soft drinks in West Virginia public schools has lost its two Republican co-sponsors. Senate Minority Leader Mike Hall and Sen. David Nohe had been the two Republicans among the bill's 10 sponsors. Both have asked to be removed as sponsors. The bill would repeal legislation passed last decade that was supposed to promote healthy drinks in schools, but had unintended consequences, including allowing the sale of soft drinks in high schools. The House and Senate health committees endorsed the bill during interim meetings in January. Senator Hall said he wants to study the bill further before he decides whether to support it or not. For more information, contact Mary Lou Monaghan at mmonaghan@vending.org.


Wisconsin: Governor proposes hybrid Medicaid expansion
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Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker has rejected expanding Medicaid in the state, but has instead proposed a hybrid plan that would allow more of the state’s poorest residents into the plan while dropping coverage of others. Under this new plan, about 82,000 new people would qualify for the plan, known as BadgerCare, while about 87,000 would be dropped. The new qualifiers would be the state’s poorest adults without dependent children. Those losing coverage would be directed to get insurance through the health benefits exchange, a tenet of the Affordable Care Act. Walker has already stated that Wisconsin will not participate in running its exchange, instead leaving it to the federal government. For additional information, contact Kim Radulski at kradulski@vending.org.

The National Automatic Merchandising Association www.vending.org

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