Recent Op-Eds

This past week, the Senate had an opportunity to pass a bipartisan amendment to repeal a burdensome tax-reporting requirement included in the recently enacted health care bill, which requires that every business submit a 1099 tax form for business transactions totaling $600 or more per year. The amendment, offered by Senator Mike Johanns (R-Neb.) and Senator Blanche Lincoln (D-Ark.), was fully paid for and was a fiscally responsible proposal that I supported.

This bipartisan amendment to repeal the 1099 mandate was also supported by numerous organizations in our state, including the South Dakota Farm Bureau, the South Dakota Agri-Business Association, the South Dakota Association of Cooperatives, and a host of small business groups. Yet, despite receiving broad support from these business and agriculture groups in our state and across the country, the amendment failed by a vote of 46-52.

The costly 1099 paperwork mandate is a burdensome requirement for both large and small employers across South Dakota. What may seem like an innocuous tax requirement to the federal government, will end up costing our businesses, farmers, and ranchers time and money that could be better spent on improving their businesses or hiring new workers.

In an economic climate where many businesses are stretching every penny to prevent layoffs or to keep their doors open, the Obama Administration and the Congressional majority continue to push troubling regulations and new burdens on our small businesses. These policies ultimately create uncertainty and instability in the employment market, and stand in the way of job creation.

Congress should listen to the business community, the agriculture community, and the trade associations and repeal the 1099 provision of the health care bill without delay. Now is the time to give employers the freedom they need to grow and expand their operations--not the time to discourage growth and entrepreneurship through costly paperwork. I will continue to work with my colleagues in the Senate to repeal this burdensome requirement.