After 6 Votes for Software Tax, Now Congressional Candidate Spilka Wants it Repealed

“It is only prudent never to place complete confidence in that by which we have even once been deceived.” ― René Descartes

Massachusetts State Senator Karen Spilka(D-Ashland) has voted six times for a software services tax over the past few months.  Now, as she runs for Congress, and needs the support of the tech community she’s changing her tune, and calling for a repeal of the software tax.

Three times Spilka was faced with a vote that specifically would have removed the 6.25% tax on software services from the underlying Transportation Finance Package, and three times she voted against removing the tax.

First Spilka was able to vote on Bruce Tarr’s Amendment 63 to the bill which would have removed all taxes from the bill.  In a roll call of 4Y to 29N Spilka voted against removing all taxes from the bill (Roll Call #27 of 2013).

Then Spilka was able to vote to remove specifially the software tax.  The amendement was Bruce Tarr’s Amendment 74 to remove the software services tax specifically from the bill. In a roll call vote of 4Y to 28N Spilka voted against removing the software services tax from the bill (Roll Call 32 of 2013).

continued after the flip…

Then for the third time when faced with the ability to remove the software services tax from the bill through yet another Bruce Tarr amendment, Karen Spilka voted with 29 other Democrats to keep the software services tax in the transportation finance bill (Roll Call 103 of 2013).

In addition to the three chances Senator Spilka had to explicitly remove the software services tax from the legislation she voted twice for passage of the law, once for initial passage, once for the conference committee version, and once to override the Governor’s veto which enacted the legislation.

Now after six times voting for the software services tax, Spilka is trying to obfuscate about her votes by proposing to repeal the legislation.

Ashland state Sen. Karen Spilka is filing a bill to repeal the expansion of the Massachusetts sales tax to computer software design services.

Spilka, who’s also running in the state’s special 5th Congressional District election, said that since the tax took effect July 31, the reaction of the technology industry shows the tax is harming the state’s innovation economy.

Spilka was among those who voted to override Gov. Deval Patrick’s veto of a transportation financing bill that included the software tax.

In an emailed statement, Republican Minority Leader Bruce Tarr (R-Gloucester) had the following to say:

“I am glad that some of those who have voted consistently to support the computer services tax are now realizing just how destructive it is to our economy and are interested in joining our efforts to oppose it.  We will continue to explore each and every opportunity to eliminate this tax, including the continued filing of amendments and a bill that is nearly ready to be submitted.

Hopefully now those who are seeking to change course will join us on the one that we have been pursuing since the tax was first proposed, and together we can stop this job killing measure.”

File under Karen come lately.  

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