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NGA Outlines Tax Reform Principles

ARLINGTON, Va. — The National Grocers Association here on Wednesday outlined three principles for tax reform legislation, based on results of a membership survey.

NGA members said any reforms must be fair for all businesses; continue to encourage capital investment; and incentivize businesses to move into underserved communities.

Peter J. Larkin, president and chief executive officer, said, "Many try to simplify tax reform into a one-sentence talking point that often fails to reflect reality. The results of this survey clearly demonstrate [that the] tax provisions identified by our membership are important to growing the economy and creating jobs. Independent retail and wholesale grocers are committed to serving their consumers, communities and employees, and if tax reform is done fairly and equitably, they will continue to [be able to] fulfill that commitment."

The survey indicated NGA members favor three main principles in any tax reform legislation:

• It must address individual and corporate tax rates for all business entities, including S-corporations, C-corporations and limited liability corporations (LLCs), with respondents noting the adverse effect higher taxes have on their ability to reinvest in their stores and people without going deeper into debt. The survey also found 88% of respondents said they are concerned about estate taxes.

• It should retain provisions that encourage capital investment so businesses can use cash fiow to continue to create jobs and grow the economy.

• It must maintain incentives for businesses to expand employment opportunities and investments in underserved communities, including such provisions as the work opportunity tax credit that enables independent grocers to hire workers that typically face barriers to employment and the new markets tax credit that encourages them to open stores in underserved communities.

NGA said it plans to share the survey results with legislators, including members of the House Ways and Means Committee and the Senate Finance Committee, "to ensure the principles outlined in this report are given strong consideration and become incorporated into comprehensive tax reform," Larkin said.

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