Jeff Branscome writes about Spotsylvania County.
Cole’s BPOL Bill Passes Crossover
Del. Mark Cole listened to his friends in Stafford County rather than those in Spotsylvania County when it came to crafting his BPOL Bill.
Spotsylvania supervisors made that clear recently during a board meeting, and some said they thought Cole wasn’t being helpful with his bill, but rather he was being too political.
Here is information from a Cole press release:
Cole’s HB 57 would impose a freeze on the Business, Professional, and Occupational License (BPOL) tax. The BPOL tax was originally imposed as a way to raise funds to pay for the War of 1812.
“It is a very unfair tax because it is based on a business’ gross receipts not on income or profits; so a company could be struggling or losing money and still have to pay the tax,” Cole explained. “BPOL can become a job killer, especially for small business.”
But it’s not just a freeze on the BPOL. Any locality that has not enacted a BPOL tax will never be able to if the bill passes.
This bill perplexed members of the Spotsy BOS. They asked Cole to submit a bill that would make the tax based on net profits, and not gross receipts. Stafford County supervisors repealed the BPOL Tax and this bill is obviously something the majority on the Stafford board requested.
Some Spotsylvania supervisors, such as Jerry Logan and Hap Connors, said they aren’t fans of the way BPOL works, but they do understand that losing the tax would mean millions of lost revenue. In Fiscal Year 2008, the BPOL tax generated more than $661.8 million for the counties, cities, and towns that imposed the tax. The BPOL tax is imposed in all 39 cities, 47 of the 95 counties, and many of the towns of the Commonwealth.
Here is what Spotsylvania supervisors asked for: Support Code amendment language giving Spotsylvania County and other jurisdictions the authority to determine whether to use gross or net figures when Business, Professional and Occupational License (BPOL) taxes are imposed.