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Taxing the Tannenbaum

The U.S. Department of Agriculture approved a 15-cent tax on real Christmas trees to raise funds for ads promoting once-live trees for the holidays.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture approved an industry-supported 15-cent tax on fresh cut Christmas trees to fund a campaign to promote the purchase of real trees. The Christmas Tree Checkoff Task Force, which formed in early 2008, approached the USDA about creating the proposed national research and promotion program.

"The purpose of the program will be to strengthen the position of fresh cut Christmas trees in the marketplace and maintain and expand markets for Christmas trees within the United States," according to an entry in the Federal Register.

Growers who import or produce fewer than 500 trees are exempted.

The fee could increase to 20-cents per tree in the future. Three years after implementation the USDA proposes taking a referendum of industry producers and importers to see if the tax should remain in place.

Since the tax was posted in the federal register Tuesday, the President Barack Obama's administration has faced sharp criticism from conservative new sources, to include the Drudge report.

ABC News is now reporting that the USDA will delay implementing the tax

daniel phelan November 09, 2011 at 07:14 PM
All this fuss is really about the fact that the Republican agenda of crushing Unions and butting into the personal lives of women was TROUNCED yesterday at the ballot box!! Ha! Ha! This is typical Republican strategy: create a grotesquely distorted caricature, broadcast the delusion at the top of your lungs, and hope that you manage to reinforce just enough cynicism and hopelessness to ensure the election of someone who truly cares only for funneling all of the country's wealth and power into the hands of a tiny, corrupt elite. Anybody who falls for Republican garbage propaganda deserves the fate Republicans would afford them. It's 15 cents people, once a year, and far from a tax initiated by the Obama administration, the proposal to create an assessment on tree growers to fund a research and promotion program through the USDA was begun by the industry during the Bush administration. In February 2008, faced with declining sales, members of the National Christmas Tree Association created a task force to consider the merits of a checkoff program, which would allow the USDA to collect a fee from growers in order to fund research into marketing Christmas trees. “Nature abhors a vacuum, and there is no vacuum in nature as empty as the leadership of the Republican Party today.” Conservative columnist Richard Viguerie Enough with you moronic Republican propagandists......
Reem Chiaviello November 10, 2011 at 03:48 PM
Let's count our taxes Daniel. So we have the 15 cents tree tax, 5 cents bag tax, 10% sales tax, gasoline tax, car tax, property tax, capital gains tax, unemployment tax, Medicare/medicate tax, social security tax, the tolls tax, personal income tax, state and federal tax. How much more taxes do you want? The only thing left is the ability to breath tax!!!

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