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David Campbell’s Letter to Representative Boehner

Tax Cloud’s CEO David Campbell has history of misleading elected officials. So, we weren’t surprised when he did it again this week in a letter to Speaker Boehner. In his letter, David Campbell claims that the MFA must be passed now to … wait for it … protect small online sellers.

Say what?

Rick Smith from MarketplaceFairnessCoalition.org just released a brilliant and devastating rebuttal to the letter.  Please read the rebuttal and spread the word. We’ve already reached out to Boehner’s office and other members of Congress with Smith’s rebuttal/fact-check but the more people who call and set the record straight, the better.

 

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1,000 Retailers Affected? Try 3.5 Million.

Proponents of the Marketplace Fairness Act have made the preposterous claim that this bill would only affect 1,000 retailers. This talking point has been repeated on the Hill many times. Here is a clip of Dick Durbin making the preposterous claim during a Congressional hearing:

First, we must point out the obvious. There are tens of thousands of small business who have joined coalitions like ours, including the We R Here Coalition and eBay Main Street to fight back against MFA. If only 1,000 retailers will be affected why are there tens of thousands who have joined our groups and are actively fighting to defeat the bill?

Second, in the clip above, Senator Durbin claims that there are only 11 retailers who will be affected by the Marketplace Fairness Act in the entire state of Oregon. Let the record state that we have more than 11 Oregon business owners in the eMainStreet Alliance and none of our Oregon members were named by the Senator. We have provided names and included signatures of Oregon businesses in our letter to Congress.

Third, the actual number of small businesses that will be adversely affected by this bill could be in the millions! But, don’t take our word for it; Rick Smith of MarketplaceFairnessCoalition.org recently discovered a hidden video by FedTax/Tax Cloud–a Certified Software Provider (CSP) that has openly lobbied for the passage of MFA– wherein they assert that the MFA will affect up to 3.5 MILLION retailers!

“Between 350,000 and 3.5 million retailers will be impacted by the new law ….” — Tax Cloud Video

We believe that if there is a small seller exemption in the bill, the number of affected small businesses would be close to the number Tax Cloud (Fed Tax) reported: 350,000.  Furthermore, proponents plan on getting rid of the exemption over time so that every remote seller in American will be entangled by this bill. So, even if ‘only’ 350,000 are affected at passage (with a small seller exemption in place), 3.5 million retailers will ultimately be impacted by compliance burdens and unfair regulations.

Once their video’s existence was discovered, Tax Cloud pulled it from the web and filed DMCA takedown notices against parties that repost it. But that won’t work. The cat is out of the bag and the veil has slipped. You can read the full transcript of the video and watch the clip in question here. The link also provides more details about Tax Cloud efforts to hide their revealing (and pernicious) video secret.

 

 

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Secret Video Uncovered – Tax Cloud Says Marketplace Fairness Act Will Affect up to 3.5 MILLION Retailers

We’ve taken issue with Tax Cloud/Fed Tax and their CEO David Campbell before. Campbell has repeatedly made misleading statements to the public, to the media and to elected officials about the capabilities of his sales tax software and the impact of the MFA. You can read more about that here and here.

Tax Cloud/Fed Tax, Avalara and other CSPs (Certified Software Providers) stand to make billions of dollars if MFA/MITFA gets rammed through.  They know that if the MFA passes, it will impact an enormous number of small businesses and they are rooting for just that so they can profit off the ensuing burdensome regulations.

The problem is, up until now, proponents of the MFA – including the Certified Software Providers – have grossly (and we would argue, purposely) understated the real number of individuals and small businesses that would be ensnared and impacted by the MFA so they can convince lawmakers that it will only hurt a small number of small businesses.  Proponents have been coy (at best) and downright dishonest (at worst). Some have even suggested it will only affect a thousand retailers (that is the downright dishonesty we’ve been talking about).

Nevertheless, the veil has slipped. A promotional video by Tax Cloud was recently uncovered by Rick Smith of MarketplaceFairnessCoalition.org. In the video Tax Cloud / Fed Tax admit the real impact of the MFA:

“Between 350,000…and 3.5 million retailers will be impacted by the new law ….”

Tax Cloud also suggests a potential windfall for their business:

“…an opportunity of 1.3 billion dollars for Fedtax.”

Once the video was discovered, Tax Cloud pulled it from the web and they have filed DMCA takedown notices against parties that repost it. But that won’t work. The cat is out of the bag. You can read the full transcript of the video and watch the clip in question here.

We have made countless calls to lawmakers over the past two years and even visited personally with many of them. In many  of those meetings they’ve said that proponents, including the certified software providers, told them that the legislation would only affect a thousand retailers or so.

Please use the Tax Cloud transcript when you go and visit or call your representatives about this issue.  It is quite compelling to show what proponents are admitting when they think nobody is paying attention. 

 

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David Campbell CEO of FedTax has a TruST Problem

In 2012, in a letter to the Governor of Maine, David Campbell, CEO of FedTax, tried to garner support for remote-seller use-tax collection legislation by claiming that any retailer that uses a shopping cart or order management system could integrate and use his third-party tax collection system in 20 minutes (or less).

Any retailer that uses an online “shopping cart” or order management system can register with our service and be ready to collect sales tax in 20 minutes (or less), no matter how small they are.” (emphasis added) — David Campbell (CEO, FedTax)

Many members of eMainStreet have been offended by this claim, not only because it is patently false, but also because proponents of the MFA have been using Campbell’s false claims, like this one, to mislead lawmakers.  Today, in response to a study about the true costs of sales tax software by TruST which blew up this falsehood, Campbell admitted that his software – TaxCloud – does not do what he previously claimed. Continue Reading →

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TaxCloud, David Campbell and the Marketplace Fairness Act

TaxCloud is a sales tax calculation software made by the for-profit company FedTax. If the Marketplace Fairness Act passes, tens of thousands of small businesses will be forced to use either FedTax’s TaxCloud software or software provided by one of the other five certified software providers (all of them for-profit businesses).

FedTax would likely profit handsomely if the Marketplace Fairness Act (MFA) were to pass. In Fact, collectively, certified software providers could make hundreds of millions of dollars at the expense of taxpayers and small businesses.  One of the other certified software providers, Avalara, has already raised around $49 million in Venture Capital funds from Benaroya, Pioneer Venture Partners, and Sageview Capital.  One venture investor said that the VCs believe the MFA could be  “a big driver and a catalyst for the industry.”  David Campbell, FedTax CEO, appears to be pursuing big investment dollars, too.

“We are building contacts with institutional investors,” – David Campbell, CEO of FedTax.

David Campbell and his company FedTax will benefit if the MFA passes, so we can understand his enthusiasm for the controversial legislation. But in our opinion Campbell is more than merely enthusiastic. Continue Reading →