• California Internet Tax devastates 25,000 state businesses and their employees. Are Governor Brown and the Democratic legislators accomplices in violation of federal and state mass layoff laws?

    July 7th, 2011 by admin Categories: Blogs Tags: , , , , ,

    Like 25,000 other Californians I received an email yesterday from online retailer Amazon advising me that my status as an Amazon Associate is over, and they will stop paying commissions for ad referrals from my website of “click-through customers”.

    While my own commissions are nothing to speak of, as the LA Times pointed out:

    “Many of about 25,000 affiliates in California, especially larger ones with dozens of employees, are likely to leave the state, said Rebecca Madigan, executive director of trade group Performance Marketing Assn. The affiliates combined paid $152 million in state income taxes last year…”

    The state’s action could be devastating for affected workers and their families, and ironically it could be a violation of federal and state anti-mass layoff laws.

    Both the federal Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (“WARN” Act), and the California version by the same name require that employers provide a 60 day advance notice of mass layoffs of as few as 100 employees. Well, how about mass business destruction?

    Not sure you can blame it on the online retailers. It’s not like the State of California was unaware of the implications of what similar actions by other legislatures have had. Just look at Internet tax laws in Texas, New York, and four others; each was immediately answered by the same cancellation of commissions for affiliates.

    Looks to me like another Incline Village (NV) Economic Development Act on the part of our vaunted California Democratic ruling class, encapsulated in the LA Times story’s conclusion:

    One affiliate, Ken Rockwell of San Diego, the owner of a 12-year-old photography website, said he planned to move out of state.

    “Will it be Las Vegas or Scottsdale or Ensenada?” he said. “It’s a question of where, not if.”

    Posted June 30, 2011 by John Thomas Flynn

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