Proposed update to Maryland sales tax concerns small business owners

FREDERICK, Md. (DC News Now) — A new bill would update the current sales and use tax for businesses that offer services in Maryland.

Many local businesses in Frederick County are against the bill, saying the tax would negatively impact their business.

The bill reduces the state sales tax by one percent — but President of the Frederick County Chamber of Commerce Rick Weldon said it would change how everyone does business.

“Having your taxes done, your accountant would now have to charge you sales tax,” Weldon said. “A fitness coach would have to add the sales tax. If you go to a laundromat or a dry clean, you’d now pay a sales tax.”

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Small business owner Darren Clark said he is worried that he will lose customers due to their inability to afford their services if the bill is passed.

“If my costs increase because my vendors are going to start charging me that cell tax I’m gonna have to pass out to my customers,” Clark, who owns Clark Computer Services, said.

“Every other small business owner or business owner period, they’re not gonna be able to absorb that the impact of a sudden 5% cost increase on labor, they’re going to have to pass it on to their customers, and that’s going to trickle down to the consumer,” he continued.

He had a message to lawmakers.

“I think the real answer here is to take a step back,” Clark said. “Look at how we’re spending money currently.”

The bill is currently waiting to advance to the house floor for further consideration.

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