ATD Legislative Priorities

Freezing the Federal Excise Tax on Trucks

NADA-TV Report:

U.S. Rep. Reid Ribble visits ATD's Eric Jorgensen's dealership, JX Enterprises, where they discuss the federal excise tax. 

Congress imposes a 12 percent federal excise tax (FET) on most new heavy-duty trucks. Raising the FET on heavy-duty trucks has been discussed, which would depress new heavy-duty truck sales and delay the deployment of cleaner, safer, and more fuel economical trucks.

With the highway bill due to be reauthorized this year, Congress should support H. Con. Res. 52, which opposes an FET increase, and consider lowering or eliminating the tax to address its detrimental impact on the environment and the trucking industry.

For more information, click here.

Tax Reform Should Protect Small Business Entities from Tax Increases

Any effort to reform only the corporate tax code could have a detrimental effect on small businesses, such as automobile dealerships, which often operate as “pass-through” entities. These businesses, which pay taxes at the individual income tax rates, could lose the benefit of critical tax preferences (i.e., deductions, credits and exclusions) while gaining none of the benefits of a lower corporate tax rate.  As Congressional tax-writing committees work through possible major changes to the tax code, NADA/ATD urges a comprehensive approach that addresses both the individual tax code and the corporate tax code to promote fairness in the treatment of all businesses, regardless of their entity form.

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Estate Tax Reform

In January 2013, Congress passed an estate tax regime of a 40 percent rate and a $5 million exemption, indexed for inflation. This legislation also preserved crucial planning techniques such as stepped-up basis and spousal transfer of unused exemption amounts. Now that the estate tax is finally permanent, Congress must avoid making harmful changes that would impair the ability of dealerships to be transferred to the next generation or put dealership jobs at risk.

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LIFO (Last In, First Out) Method of Accounting

This longstanding accounting practice LIFO (“last in, first out”) is an inventory accounting method used by companies to help mitigate the impact of inflation.  LIFO allows companies to calculate their income by basing sales on the newest inventory for goods, such as vehicles and parts, which increase in price over time.  NADA supports preserving LIFO, as its repeal would result in a substantial tax increase on dealerships and would strip dealers of working capital, making it harder to create jobs.

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Truck Dealers Host Members of Congress

ATD has initiated a grassroots program for dealers to meet with Members of Congress at their dealerships to educate them on the impact of the laws they pass have on truck dealerships. These visits are a great opportunity for dealers to explain to their Member of Congress or Senator the effect tax increases or more regulation has on employment and sales.  Dozens of dealers across the country have already hosted numerouselected officials at their dealerships.

View photos of congressional visits on Flickr

If you are interested in hosting your Member of Congress, please contact ATD Legislative Affairs at (202) 547-5500 or email

Other Priority Issues

To view NADA’s other legislative priorities, please click here.