ATD Chairman: Federal Excise Tax on New Heavy-Duty Trucks Hurts Small Businesses

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Parker addresses the opening General Session (click to enlarge)

NEW ORLEANS (Jan. 27, 2017) - Steve Parker, chairman of the American Truck Dealers (ATD), called on the nation's commercial truck dealers to urge Congress to explore reforming or possibly repealing the 12-percent federal excise tax (FET) on the retail sale of trucks, trailers and other commercial truck products.

“The FET was originally imposed to help finance the cost of World War I,” Parker said in remarks during the ATD Convention and Expo in New Orleans. “But since 1955, the tax rate on our products has increased by 300 percent - ballooning from 3 percent to 12 percent.”
Parker, president of Baltimore Potomac Truck Centers in Linthicum, Md., which operates five full-service commercial truck dealership locations with Mack, Volvo and Hino Trucks franchises in Maryland and Virginia, added that any increase in the FET would depress new truck sales and slow the deployment of cleaner, safer and more fuel-efficient trucks into America's trucking fleet.

Last November, ATD took the fight to the IRS., where the ATD leadership explained the problem of complying with the numerous requirements imposed by the FET.
Last Congress, ATD worked to gain support for H. Con. Res. 33, which opposes an increase in what Parker said is the “sky-high FET.” Truck dealers have the burden of the highest excise tax on any product, he added.
“If this doesn't change, there won't be an incentive to replace older trucks with newer, more fuel-efficient models,” he said. “And speaking of newer trucks, we're reaching out to our manufacturers, suppliers and vendors-who are here with us this week. We're working to build good relationships and open more lines of communication because that's the only way we'll be prepared for the changes ahead.”
Parker urged the truck dealers to continue to expand their working relationships with customers, manufacturers and other industry stakeholders as a way to move the industry ahead.
“Customers demand services that keep them on the-go - whether it's mobile communication or expanded levels of vehicle support,” he said. “At the center of this evolution is you - the dealer.”
The ATD convention runs from January 26-29 at the Morial Convention Center in New Orleans.  Founded in 1917, NADA celebrates its 100-year anniversary this year.