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Archive for November, 2011

Obama Administration to delay new “Christmas Tree Tax”

Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

WASHINGTON (JAKE TAPPER / ABC NEWS) — The U.S. Department of Agriculture is going to delay implementation and revisit a proposed new 15 cent fee on fresh-cut Christmas trees, sources tell ABC News. The fee, requested by the National Christmas Tree Association in 2009, was first announced in the Federal Registry yesterday and has generated criticism of President Obama from conservative media outlets. The well-trafficked Drudge Report is leading with the story, linking to a blog by David Addington, a former top aide to then-Vice President David Addington, at the conservative Heritage Foundation assailing the president thus: “The economy is barely growing and nine percent of the American people have no jobs. Is a new tax on Christmas trees the best President Obama can do? And, by the way, the American Christmas tree has a great image that doesn’t need any help from the government.”

The National Christmas Tree Association says the fee would fund a program “designed to benefit the industry and will be funded by the growers” and is “not expected to have any impact on the final price consumers pay for their Christmas tree.” According to the Federal Registry, the proposed Christmas Tree Promotion Board, which would be funded by the new fee, would launch a “program of promotion, research, evaluation, and information designed to strengthen the Christmas tree industry’s position in the marketplace; maintain and expend existing markets for Christmas trees; and to carry out programs, plans, and projects designed to provide maximum benefits to the Christmas tree industry” and to “enhance the image of Christmas trees and the Christmas tree industry in the United States.”

White House spokesman Matt Lehrich told ABC News that despite some media coverage, “I can tell you unequivocally that the Obama Administration is not taxing Christmas trees. What’s being talked about here is an industry group deciding to impose fees on itself to fund a promotional campaign, similar to how the dairy producers have created the ‘Got Milk?’ campaign.”

Nonetheless, the criticisms have apparently had an impact as the program is now being delayed.

Bah, humbug?

-Jake Tapper

More: continued here

Biz Picture – Owner of popular Wilmington radio stations to be sold

Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

Sea-Comm Media is in negotiations to be sold.

More: continued here

White House deems East Coast off limits for offshore oil and gas drilling

Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

While neither side will be completely happy with the proposal, it’s likely to please environmentalists more.

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Defeated candidates in Carolina Beach blame SBI investigation

Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

An anonymous letter than sparked the investigation was most damaging.

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What’s open and closed for Veterans Day

Wednesday, November 9th, 2011

Here’s the holiday schedule for Friday, Veterans Day.

More: continued here

 

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