Washington DC: The Greater Coachella Valley Chamber of Commerce was in Washington DC last week to participate in the AAF (American Advertising Federation) Day on the Hill. Advertising and business professionals from around the country descended on the Capitol to discuss a range of issues currently impacting business, as well as proposed legislation.
During the visit Patrick Swarthout, the chambers legislative representative, met with lawmakers from our region including Congressman Raul Ruiz (CA), Congressmen Ken Calvert (CA), Congressman Paul Cook (CA), Senator Dianne Feinstein (CA), Senator Kamala Harris (CA), Senator Kyrsten Sinema (AZ), and Senator Martha McSally (AZ).
Front and center for those discussions was on-going debate at the federal level regarding national privacy standards and proposals to tax advertising.
Our position on Data Privacy
The GCV supports a privacy regulatory approach – a new paradigm – that can help regulators, consumers and market participants determine the appropriate treatment of various data practices. This approach should establish a clear set of rules on a range of harmful and unreasonable data practices that consumers, businesses, and enforcers can rely on. It would also provide one national standard, which means it would preempt broad state privacy laws like California’s – but recognize that any preemptive law needs to provide very strong protections for consumers. Inconsistent local laws, no matter how well-intentioned, create patchwork standards that would break the well-functioning data-driven economy, diminish the value created for consumers, and hurt job creation and innovation. The approach should not create a one-size-fits-all privacy standard for every piece of data or for every kind of data practice regardless of risk, context, or the sensitivity of the data. An inflexible approach will create barriers to entry for new market participants by raising the risks and costs of holding data, even when privacy harms are remote.
Our Position on Advertising Tax Deduction Changes
Since the adoption of the Tax Code in 1913, advertising has been treated as a fully deductible cost of doing business. Advertising is a routine part of business operations and essential to the life of most businesses. It is an ordinary and necessary business expense, just like salaries, rent, utilities, and office supplies. The tax treatment of advertising costs has been upheld in the U.S. Tax Court, supported by a major Revenue Ruling from the IRS, and endorsed by two Nobel Laureates in economics. A drastic change in the way advertising costs are treated would force advertisers to pay much more in taxes and would endanger other essential costs of doing business. We oppose such a change.