Source: Washington Department of Agriculture
Washington legislative update: B & O taxes
A public hearing to consider a Washington proposal to create a uniform state “business and occupation” tax rate on dairy and other agricultural businesses was held Jan. 21, according to Washington Dairy Federation government affairs director Dan Wood.
The hearing, conducted by the Washington state House Finance Committee, was held to get input on HB 2110, sponsored by Rep. Larry Haler (R-Richland).
In an update to WDF members, Wood said the tax is levied on gross receipts, measured on the value of products, gross proceeds of sale, or gross income of the business. It does not consider costs of operating a business, with no deductions for labor, materials, taxes or other costs.
HB 2110 would more than double the dairy manufacturing B & O rate, from 0.138% to 0.2904% of gross revenue, Wood said. Other agricultural commodity manufacturing, such as grains, vegetables, fruits, renewable fuels and more would see a similar increase in the B & O tax rate applied to processing their products.
The fiscal note estimates the state would lose more than $8.8 billion in revenue by mid-2019 if the uniform tax is enacted, Wood said. Yet certain sectors of agriculture, including dairy processing, would see a dramatic increase in taxes.
Source: Washington Dairy Federation, Washington Department of Reveue
WUD Dairy Leader Program accepting applications until April 4
April 4 is the deadline to apply for Western United Dairymen's California Dairy Leaders Program. Designed to train the next generation of California's dairy leaders, the leadership program consists of several sessions devoted to developing a better understanding of the economic, legislative, marketing, and environmental issues facing the industry.
The year-long program kicks off in the spring. Topics include environmental issues, the state and federal legislative process, dairy pricing and economics, biotechnological developments, marketing and promotion, and public relations skills. Participants will develop and enhance their leadership skills through communication, business etiquette, negotiation skills, time management, and team building workshops. Instruction will be provided by recognized experts in their field.
Eligible participants must be actively involved in milk production, be able to spend the necessary time in class, as well as studying resource materials, and be able to commit to visits to locations such as Sacramento and Washington, D.C. The program application process this year is being opened up to individuals in allied industries.
Class enrollment will be limited to ensure one-on-one instruction. The program enrollment fee of $750 should be submitted with letters of recommendation. Further information is available by contacting Western United Dairymen at (209) 527-6453.