Letter to House Finance Committee Re: HB 1550 and HB 2334 — Concerning the excise taxation of martial arts
Below is a copy of the email that I sent to the 15 members of the Washington State House Finance Committee who are meeting on Friday, January 15, 2016 to review HB 2334 which has been introduced to correct the structural inefficiencies of HB 1550 and exempt martial arts from retail sales tax.
January 13, 2016
Re: HB 1550 and HB 2334 — Concerning the excise taxation of martial arts.
My name is Chris Herrman and I own Alpha Martial Arts, LLC in the Seattle, WA. Since 2001 we have been helping children, parents and professionals become their best through the practice of martial arts.
During the 2015 legislative session the legislature voted for and passed HB 1550, simplifying the taxation of amusement, recreation and physical fitness services. As a result martial arts schools are now unfairly treated as ‘retail items’ instead of ‘services’ and subject to retail sales tax up to 9.6%. Gymnastics, yoga, dance, tennis, golf, swimming and other instructional lessons are not subject to retail sales tax and martial arts should not be either.
Please support HB 2334, which has been introduced to correct the structural inefficiencies of HB 1550 and exempt martial arts from retail sales tax. HB 2334 is scheduled for public hearing in the House Committee on Finance on Friday, January 15, 2016.
Martial Arts schools are not gyms and no parent enrolls their child in a martial arts school primarily for fitness.
“I registered my daughter when she was 4 years old at Alpha Martial Arts in Seattle. I did it purposely, with the knowledge that this school was going to teach her important values in character. Christina has learned many lessons in the almost five years she has been attending the program. She has gained courage, strength, independence, perseverance, knowledge, and learned to be a good leader and role model for her peers. I’m more than thrilled with what she has accomplished. I’ve also learned that the program doesn’t just stop with their students, it branches out to teaching their families and community as well. This is a Leadership program more than an after school recreational /sports program.” – Jenee Sellers, Parent –
Thank you for your consideration and support.
Alpha Martial Arts, LLC