Mobile device users: Click here to view the mobile version.
This message contains images. If you don't see images, click here to view.
  Mobile version   RSS   Subscribe    Unsubscribe
Home   Membership   Expos   Publications   Knowledge Center   Education   Coffee Service   Gov. Affairs   Career Center Dec. 3, 2010
 
 
 

Federal Issues



High Priority: Vending Victory -- Congress Passes Coin Measure Protecting Vending
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The U.S. Senate voted on Thursday, December 2 to pass H.R. 6162 a measure to allow research authority for alternative coinage materials. The legislation allows the Secretary of the Treasury to research and develop alternative coinage material. However, the Secretary must consult vending machine and coin acceptor manufacturers, and “may not include any recommendation for new specifications for producing a circulating coin that would require any significant change to coin-accepting and coin-handling equipment to accommodate changes to all circulating coins simultaneously.” NAMA supported this legislation, helped provide language for the bill, and NAMA Chairman Craig Hesch testified before Congress in July regarding potential alloy change in coins. The legislation will be signed into law by President Obama shortly. For additional information contact Ned Monroe at nmonroe@vending.org.


Congress Passes School Vending Measure
Share   Share on
FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The U. S. Congress has given final approval to a $4.5 billion childhood nutrition bill, the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act. The bipartisan legislation expands eligibility for school meal programs; establishes nutrition standards for all foods sold in schools, including that sold in vending machines; and provides a 6-cent increase for each school lunch to help cafeterias serve healthier meals. President Obama is expected to shortly sign into law childhood-nutrition legislation. The USDA will then be required to update the national nutritional standards of all food sold in all schools through the entire school grounds. This will include one standard for food sold in vending, a la carte, cafeteria and other school locations. This may help vending operators and product manufacturers since there will soon be one national standard rather than a patchwork of state and local nutritional guidelines. In addition, it does not ban vending machines from school grounds, as some activists occasionally recommend. For additional information contact Ned Monroe at nmonroe@vending.org.


Senate Fails to Repeal New IRS 1099 Burden
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The U.S. Senate voted twice this week to repeal new IRS reporting burdens, but failed to gain enough votes for passage. NAMA is actively working to overturn this reporting requirement. The new burden was part of the federal healthcare reform bill which requires all businesses and tax-exempt organizations to issue a Form 1099 to vendors from whom they buy goods totaling $600 or more annually. The new paperwork burden goes into effect in 2012, unless the U.S. House of Representatives also votes to overturn the new requirement. The National Taxpayer Advocate has estimated that 40 million businesses, charities and associations would be impacted by this new requirement. President Obama supports repealing new Form 1099 requirements, saying in a press conference just after the Nov. 2 elections that the measure was “counterproductive” for the business sector. For additional information contact Ned Monroe at nmonroe@vending.org.


New Calorie Disclosure Regulations Will Require 14 Million Hours per Year in Vending
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Food and Drug Administration recently estimated that the vending industry will need more than 14 million staff hours each year to label snacks and comply with their new federal regulation. Calorie disclosure, which passed Congress in the federal health care reform legislation, requires that anyone who owns or operates 20 or more vending machines disclose the calories of all snacks and drinks prior to the point of purchase. NAMA is working with Congress and the administration to reduce this harmful economic burden. For additional information contact Ned Monroe at nmonroe@vending.org.

TAKE ACTION!
Will you take a few minutes right now, to send an e-mail to your member of Congress opposing how this new calorie disclosure regulation is being implemented? When our vending operator members are struggling to survive, they can’t afford to spend 14 million hours a year labeling snacks and drinks. Will you TAKE ACTION right now by clicking here to send an e-mail to your member of Congress?



Other Federal Issues



Congress and Administration Close to Deal on Bush Tax Cuts
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Numerous media reports are predicting that a legislative package may be released shortly on the expiring Bush-era tax cuts. It appears that Republican legislative leaders and the Obama administration are negotiating details to extend all tax cuts for two or three years. The package could also include unemployment aid, the $800-per-couple 'Making Work Pay' tax credit for about 110 million households, a tuition tax credit for 8 million college students and the earned-income tax credit and child tax credit for 15 million low-income families. They also listed expiring tax breaks for small businesses. The tax provisions in question are part of the 2009 economic stimulus, all of which will expire at the end of the year. For additional information contact Ned Monroe at nmonroe@vending.org.


Food Desert Legislation Re-Introduced
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A bipartisan coalition in the U.S. House and Senate recently introduced legislation “The Healthy Foods Financing Initiative” that will invest $500 million to attempt to help individuals who live in areas without easy access to grocery stores which sell fresh produce. These so-called “food deserts” would be eliminated by leveraging private investment through federal loans and grants to create or expand fresh food outlets in underserved communities. The legislation is modeled after Pennsylvania program which used $30 million in state funding to build or renovate 88 new food stores. NAMA continues to suggest that vending could provide fresh and WIC eligible products via unattended retail locations in a much more efficient, quicker and effective manner. For additional information contact Ned Monroe at nmonroe@vending.org.


State Issues



Alabama: Governor Calls Special Session to Strengthen Ethics Laws
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Gov. Bob Riley (R) is planning to call a special session in December to strengthen the state's ethics laws, following the federal indictment last month of 11 people, including four state senators, in an alleged vote-buying scheme. For more information contact Mary Lou Monaghan at mmonaghan@vending.org.


Kansas: KIDS COUNT Report Released
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
For 18 years, the Kansas KIDS COUNT project has provided data relating to how Kansas children are doing in the areas of education, health and economic stability. This year’s report shows that economic conditions for the state’s poorest children have gotten worse, with more children entering into the poverty level. The report shows that an estimated 45% of Kansas schoolchildren are relying on the free and reduced lunch program, 40% of Kansas kids are from low-income or poverty-level households and one in ten Kansas children are currently uninsured. For further details on this report, visit www.kac.org/kidscount. For additional information contact Kim Radulski at kradulski@vending.org.


Maine: Will Not Enforce State Menu-Labeling Law
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Maine indicated that it will not enforce its state menu-labeling law due to take effect Feb. 1. The Maine Restaurant Association reports that the state is looking to bring its enforcement in line with the Food and Drug Administration's federal law. The FDA has not yet begun to enforce the federal law. For more information contact Pam Gilbert at pgilbert@vending.org.


Mississippi: Governor Proposes 8% Cuts for State Agencies
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The state budget proposed by Gov. Haley Barbour (R) addresses a projected $700 million budget shortfall with no taxes or fees, but includes 8% cuts across most state agencies. Barbour wants to freeze annual pay increases for teachers, reduce Medicaid reimbursement rates, cut funding for public television, libraries and community college sports, and consolidate the state's three historically black colleges. Barbour said the all-cuts budget is necessary to ensure the state's future fiscal health. The proposals are not all expected to make it through the Legislature, as the House of Representatives will still be in Democratic hands. For more information contact Mary Lou Monaghan at mmonaghan@vending.org.


New Jersey: State Menu-Labeling Rule Will Not Be Enforced
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
New Jersey recently joined Oregon, Massachusetts and Nassau County, N.Y., in acknowledging that the new federal menu-labeling law preempts state and local mandates. New Jersey officials notified the New Jersey Restaurant Association and others that the state will not implement state menu-labeling rules set to take effect Jan. 1. The federal legislation specifically preempts all state and local laws not identical to federal rules governing calorie and other nutrition data-posting requirements on menus in chain restaurants. For more information contact Pam Gilbert at pgilbert@vending.org.


New Jersey: Graduated Penalty System for Violation of Hands-Free Cell Law
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A Senate committee approved SB 2181, legislation that would implement a graduated penalty system for violations of the state's hands-free cell phone law. The proposal would impose a $200 fine for the first offense, up from $100. A $400 fine would be assessed for a second offense within 10 years, and a $600 penalty would be charged for subsequent offenses. Chronic offenders would be subject to a 90-day license suspension. The bill now goes to the full Senate. For more information contact Pam Gilbert at pgilbert@vending.org.


New Jersey: Bill Would Require 3% of State Contracts Set Aside for Veteran-Owned Companies
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The Military and Veterans' Affairs Committee approved AB 3308, a bill that would require state agencies to set aside 3% of their contracts for businesses that are principally located in NJ and are at least 51% owed by a military veteran. The measure now moves to the full Assembly. For more information contact Pam Gilbert at pgilbert@vending.org.


New York: State Not Able to Collect $150 Million Cigarette Sales Tax on Indian Reservations
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Legal challenges from the state's Indian tribes have prevented NY from collecting any of the $150 million from the sales tax on cigarettes sold on reservations, pushing the state's enacted budget further out of balance. The state's Indian tribes are moving forward with their legal actions against the state. The state planned to start its enforcement of the tax Sept. 1. Indian tribes challenged the collection plan, which would have allowed reservation residents to participate in a coupon program. The revenue would not be collected directly from a reservation, but from the wholesaler. Tribes raised objections, and a federal judge in western New York issued two orders to halt the collection plan at all reservations. The 2010-11 state budget is expected to fall out of balance by at least $315 million by the end of the fiscal year, March 31. The state Comptroller's Office believes that budget gap could be even higher, about $1 billion. For more information contact Pam Gilbert at pgilbert@vending.org.


Vermont: State Considering Sugar Sweetened Beverage Tax
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail
article
Vermont State Attorney General William Sorrell (D) released a report on the Vermont Healthy Weight Initiative. Included in the report was a proposal to reduce obesity, by charging a penny per ounce tax on sugar sweetened beverages. Sorrell believes that imposing an excise tax on sodas, sweetened iced teas, sports drinks, energy drinks and flavored waters could cut residents’ consumption by 20% and raise $30 million annually. The proposed tax would not apply to fruit juice, diet sodas or unflavored water. In reaction, a new group called Stop the Vermont Soda Tax coalition has been formed where taxpayers can learn more and register opposition to the proposed tax increase. For more information contact Pam Gilbert at pgilbert@vending.org.


Washington Tax on Candy, Water and Soda Ends
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Last month, voters in Washington State rejected taxation on candy and bottled water and an excise tax on carbonated drinks. Those taxes end Thursday December 2. The tax repeal will save taxpayers $1.2 billion by June 2013. For more information contact Sandy Larson at slarson@vending.org.


Wisconsin: Governor-Elect Rejects Sales Tax Hike
Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Wisconsin Governor-Elect Scott Walker (R) has rejected an idea by a member of his transition team which would have called for an increase in sales tax in exchange for a decrease in other taxes, such as property and income taxes. A spokesman for Walker stressed that the new governor would be focusing on decreasing Wisconsin’s budget deficit by cutting spending. Walker’s fellow Republicans in the Legislature have also rejected the proposal, with the Assembly Majority Leader Scott Suder stating that the plan will be dead on arrival in the state Assembly. For additional information contact Kim Radulski at kradulski@vending.org.

The National Automatic Merchandising Association www.vending.org

HEADQUARTERS: 20 N. Wacker Drive, Suite 3500, Chicago, IL 60606-3102, Voice: 312/ 346-0370, Fax: 312/ 704-4140

EASTERN OFFICE: 1600 Wilson Blvd., Ste. 650, Arlington, VA 22209, Voice: 571-346-1900, Fax: 703-836-8262

SOUTHERN OFFICE: 2300 Lakeview Parkway, Ste. 700, Alpharetta, GA, 30009, Voice: 678/916-3852. Fax: 678-916-3853

WESTERN OFFICE: 150 South Los Robles Avenue, Suite 830, Pasadena, CA 91101, Voice: 626/229-0900, Fax: 626/229-0777


Keeping In Touch With NAMA - Legislative Edition
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601   Download media kit
Keila Mack, Content Editor, 469.420.2637   Contribute news
This edition of the Keeping In Touch With NAMA was sent to ##Email##. To unsubscribe, click here. Did someone forward this edition to you? Subscribe here -- it's free!
Recent issues
Dec. 1, 2010
Nov. 24, 2010
Nov. 19, 2010
Nov. 17, 2010



7701 Las Colinas Ridge, Ste. 800, Irving, TX 75063