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  1. #1
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    Illinois lawmaker tries to backdoor in an Affiliate Tax
    See Illinois General Assembly - Full Text of HB3659

    Fast action may be needed!

  2. #2
    Member RebeccaMadiganPMA's Avatar
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    Exclamation Sign petition!
    Turns out Illinois legislators don't use email - seriously! So we've created a petition. It will be hand delivered to legislators tomorrow.

    If you are an Illinois affiliate marketer, please sign this petition by 10am CST Wednesday January 5th.

    Illinois Alert: Affiliate Nexus Tax Legislation!*|*Performance Marketing Association

    Thank you!
    Rebecca Madigan
    Executive Director | Performance Marketing Association
    o: 805.445.9700 (PST)

  3. #3
    Member InfoScout's Avatar
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    Is there anyway to get a quick explanation of the legal jargon before signing the petition?

  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador SunshineTricia's Avatar
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    Did this happen kind of crazy fast?
    --Tricia Meyer-- I love being the exception to the rule.

    Tricia Meyer | Helping Moms Connect | Wine Club Reviews and Ratings | Hunger Games Fan

  5. #5
    OPM/Moderator Hectic GHC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by helpingmoms View Post
    Did this happen kind of crazy fast?
    Chicago politics...

  6. #6
    Member RebeccaMadiganPMA's Avatar
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    Sorry I'm late chiming in, I'm in Sacramento today, trying to block nexus tax in California.

    InfoScout - good question. We've been fighting this for 2+ years and forget some people haven't heard of it! There is state legislation blazing across the country that results in merchants terminating affiliates in states where it is passed. It passed in NY in 2008, and in NC and RI in 2009 - hundreds of merchants terminated their affiliates. We beat it back in over a dozen states since then, but it keeps coming back because states think they can get a lot of money by taxing internet sales across state lines.

    It's a bit complex, it's about sales tax law and the US Constitution, of all things. We have information and background on our site: Performance Marketing Association*|* Legislation
    Rebecca Madigan
    Executive Director | Performance Marketing Association
    o: 805.445.9700 (PST)

  7. #7
    Member RebeccaMadiganPMA's Avatar
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    Now, on to IL. Yes, it came out of nowhere. We're part of a coalition of policy experts and lobbyists, from other associations and big companies. Word has it this is an appeasement to brick & mortar retailers (Walgreens, really) for getting cuts in Medicare reimbursements. It was thrown in at the last minute. We have an adviser who is a former Illinois senator and he never saw it coming.

    This is an act by the lame duck assembly, which ends in a week. It passed in the senate and will head to the House for final vote any day.

    We were all set to get affiliates to send email blast but - get this - Illinois legislators don't really use email. I'm not kidding!!! So we've got this petition up, and it will be printed out and hand delivered to legislators.

    We're holding out another day, trying to get more signatures on the petition, before delivering.

    We have no idea of our chances right now. Our message has been very successful in every state this past year: this kills small business jobs and doesn't yield the state any new sales tax revenue (because merchant terminate affiliates to avoid having to collect sales tax). It's our main message and there are lots of feet in IL pushing it.

    We're really lucky because Fat Wallet, ShareASale, CouponCabin, and Google Affiliate Network, are all based in IL, and are very active in this fight. This industry couldn't have better representatives!
    Rebecca Madigan
    Executive Director | Performance Marketing Association
    o: 805.445.9700 (PST)

  8. #8
    Member InfoScout's Avatar
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    Question Very Important
    I'm not sure if you all have tried contacting the senators and congressmen by phone or fax instead of email, but I'm in the military and I have regular contact with my congressman (Jesse Jackson, Jr.) when things seem to be unfair on the military side. The secretary usually gets back with an answer the day of or the next morning. If he isn't in one office, they call the office where he is scheduled to be or they give you a number to an assistant. Either way, he gets the message. Here is the information I use:


    Homewood Office
    17926 South Halsted
    Homewood, IL 60430
    Phone: (708) 798-6000
    Fax: (708) 798-6160

    Chicago Office
    7121 S. Yates Blvd.
    Chicago, IL 60649
    Phone: (773) 734-9660
    Fax: (773) 734-9661

    Washington DC Office
    Rayburn House Office Building
    Washington, DC 20515
    Phone: (202) 225-0773
    Fax: (202) 225-0899

    I hate SPAM, but I guarantee if all of the congressmen received a detailed fax, someone would pay attention. That is how they have requested all of my documents in the past. Not by email. FAX

    Not to mention, they have government email addresses. Depending on the domain the mail is sent from, there is a good chance that your email is being blocked (especially if there are attachments).

    My next question is this:
    How can everyday affiliates become more involved or what can they do to help in making people aware of the issues? What actions in the past has stopped this tax? I'm out of the country for a while but this has definitely grabbed my attention.

  9. #9
    OPM/Moderator Hectic GHC's Avatar
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    InfoScout, It's the State House and Senate working on this legislation, not federal.
    Greg Hoffman
    Affiliate Marketing Advocate of the Year 2016; Best OPM/Agency - 2014; Best OPM/Agency, Five Years in a Row - ABestWeb.
    Visit Greg Hoffman Consulting

  10. #10
    Member InfoScout's Avatar
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    If anyone is willing to help me and bring me up to speed, I can get permission to send my handwritten letter with my personal plea. This interests me so much because I joined the military at age 17, just out of high school. I'm now 26 years old. A bill was just written (not passed) that would force me to wait until age 65 to pull my military retirement, and my military retirement health care costs would be raised considerably. Not to mention, they were considering cutting my Tuition Assistance which is $4500 a year. I turned aggressively to affiliate marketing as an escape to build a better life for myself for when I get out of the Army. That could be at the end of my contract if this bill passes. (I legally owe Uncle Sam 3 more years of my life unless I decide to stay for 20 years total.) I have spent more time overseas in my adult life than I have on US soil. Starting in 2003 I spent 3 years in Heidelberg/Darmstadt, 1 year in Iraq, 1 year in Afghanistan, and I'm in Germany again until 2014. Being dropped from merchants leaves me stuck trying to figure out what to do in 2014---get another government job until I'm 65, I guess.

  11. #11
    Member InfoScout's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Greg Hoffman Consulting View Post
    InfoScout, It's the State House and Senate working on this legislation, not federal.
    Thanks for pulling me in to reality Greg
    Mr Jackson can't help with this one, but...


    Barb Curry can. I just got off of the phone with both offices. She is in Springfield now. They are actively waiting for my response. I even got a non-government email address to contact her. Is there someone on that can help me draft this letter?

  12. #12
    OPM/Moderator Hectic GHC's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by InfoScout View Post
    Thanks for pulling me in to reality Greg
    Mr Jackson can't help with this one, but...


    Barb Curry can. I just got off of the phone with both offices. She is in Springfield now. They are actively waiting for my response. I even got a non-government email address to contact her. Is there someone on that can help me draft this letter?
    Excellent work. I'm sure Rebecca can steer you in the right direction.
    Greg Hoffman
    Affiliate Marketing Advocate of the Year 2016; Best OPM/Agency - 2014; Best OPM/Agency, Five Years in a Row - ABestWeb.
    Visit Greg Hoffman Consulting

  13. #13
    Member InfoScout's Avatar
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    Noticed her number and gave her a call. Email is sent. I will share the response I get.

  14. #14
    ABW Ambassador superCool's Avatar
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    good luck Illinois

  15. #15
    Member RebeccaMadiganPMA's Avatar
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    If you can call or fax - please do. Here are talking points and a link to find your personal State Representative (not Senator):

    Illinois: Calls to the House Please!*|*Performance Marketing Association
    Rebecca Madigan
    Executive Director | Performance Marketing Association
    o: 805.445.9700 (PST)

  16. #16
    Affiliate Manager CTanK's Avatar
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    Just a thought...the specific wording in the Illinois amendment states that the merchant has to have a contract with the website owner. I'm no lawyer, but aren't contracts different than agreements?

    I enter into an agreement with the affiliate, but if they don't do anything, there's nothing I can do about it. I can't force them to drive traffic to Groupon. If they were contracted to drive me traffic, then I would have some sort of recourse. Right now, I don't?

  17. #17
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    Bill passed the house. Its up to the Governor to veto. Seeing as the Governor believes this will result in more taxes (and more money to play with) passage is iminent.

  18. #18
    Member RebeccaMadiganPMA's Avatar
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    Just got off a call with advisers. There is more intelligence to be gathered, not sure where the governor stands or how long he's going to take to make a decision. Once we have that information, we'll develop a plan of attack. Most likely we'll need the help of the IL affiliate community, but we don't want to bombard the governor if we think it will do more harm than good.

    Stay tuned - and bless your stars that Tim Storm, Brian Littleton and Scott Kluth are such awesome advocates. We have rarely seen that in other states.
    Rebecca Madigan
    Executive Director | Performance Marketing Association
    o: 805.445.9700 (PST)

  19. #19
    Newbie Carleenp's Avatar
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    I already left a message and sent an email to Governor Quinn. However, he is a rather pro tax person. He ran for election this year on a platform that the State needs to raise taxes (primarily income taxes) to help solve the budget crisis. I think the odds are good he will sign the legislation, but from my limited experiences with some people who have worked with him, I think he is also the type who will sincerely listen to any concerns if someone with some influence can manage to speak with him in person.

  20. #20
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    Little hope
    Just got my letter from Amazon and I have no hope at all that Quinn won't sign this bill. He already wants to up our income tax from 3% to 5%. Our state is so far into the red that those in Springfield will grab at any way to get cash - even if it's going to backfire on them.

  21. #21
    Member InfoScout's Avatar
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    The Illinois Website is down. But the governor's office contact information is as follows:

    Office of the Governor - Springfield
    207 State House
    Springfield, IL 62706

    Phone: (217) 782-0244
    TTY: (888) 261-3336

    Office of the Governor - Chicago
    James R. Thompson Center
    100 West Randolph, 16-100
    Chicago, IL 60601
    Phone: (312) 814-2121

    It's not too late.

  22. #22
    Member RebeccaMadiganPMA's Avatar
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    Illinois Affiliate Marketers: Time to Contact the Governor

    We have just been advised that Governor Quinn will likely not sign or veto this section of the bill until after next week. We now have time to educate him on the devastating impact this will have on affiliate marketers.

    If you are an Illinois affiliate marketer, please take a few minutes to call, email, fax or write Governor Quinn. If you call, you’ll most likely just leave a voice mail. They count those!

    Here are some talking points:

    My name is [ ], I am an affiliate marketer in [town], and if Amendment 3 of HB 3659 passes, my business will be devastated. I’m a small business owner, I run a website and earn revenue from advertising. Out of state merchants will terminate my advertising partnerships to avoid nexus. Overstock and Amazon already sent termination letters to their Illinois affiliates. The state won’t gain any sales tax from this law, and I’ll be put out of business in the process. There are 9,000 affiliate marketers in Illinois just like me. Please VETO Senate Amendment 3 of HB 3659 (see Line 22 through 25, Sec. 1.1 on page 9.

    You can reach him here:

    Honorable Patrick Quinn, Governor

    Office of the Governor
    207 State Capitol Building
    Springfield, IL 62706

    Email: governor@illinois.gov
    Fax: 217-558-0898
    Tele 217-782-6830
    Rebecca Madigan
    Executive Director | Performance Marketing Association
    o: 805.445.9700 (PST)

  23. #23
    Newbie Carleenp's Avatar
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    The Capitol Fax Blog is read by most lawmakers in Illinois and by their staff members. I don't know how many bother to read the comments, but I suppose adding some to its article on the legislation can't hurt. Here is the link:

    Capitol Fax.com » Amazon threatens to dump Illinois associates over “unconstitutional” bill, others threaten to leave the state - Tenaska threatens to abandon project

    Note: Sometimes this blog closes comments for the weekend and opens them again Monday morning.
    Last edited by Carleenp; January 7th, 2011 at 09:55 PM.

  24. #24
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    I will try to call tomorrow to voice my concern..

  25. #25
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    suggest that everyone spread the word
    Please publish the message to other relevant forums, newsletters, and even your own web sites to get the word out.

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