Maryland Senate Passes a Bill Exempting News Publishers from Digital Ad Tax

On March 5, the Maryland Senate passed a bill that would exempt news publishers from the state’s recently adopted digital advertising tax. Introduced in early-February, SB 787 aims to prevent services subject to the tax from passing the costs to customers, in addition to protecting news publishers and broadcasters. The bill’s definition of “news media entity” includes all news organizations engaging in “newsgathering, reporting, or publishing articles or commentary about news, current events, culture, or other matters of public interest” but excludes aggregators and republishers of third-party content. Maryland became the first state in the United States to adopt a digital advertising tax in February with companies subject to advertising taxes of up to 10 percent. Other states are currently considering similar measures. The Maryland amendment bill is now in the State House, which is expected to hold a hearing on it on March 25. Read more about the bill here (subscription required) and the full text of the bill here.

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