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Americans for Tax Reform applauds Maryland Governor Larry Hogan (R) for his vetoes today of two job-killing, business-harming tax hikes that were approved in March by the Democrat-controlled Maryland General Assembly.

The tax increases vetoed by Governor Hogan today include House Bill 732, legislation that imposes a new tax on digital advertising similar to what a number of European nations are calling for, along with a tax hike on tobacco and vaping products. Governor Hogan also vetoed House Bill 932, which applies the state sales tax to digital goods and services such as e-books, streamed movies and music. 

“Governor Larry Hogan has wisely used his veto power to protect individuals, families, and employers across Maryland from a misguided tax increase that, in addition to burdening businesses with added costs at a time when many simply cannot afford it, would’ve triggered a costly legal challenge that would’ve unnecessarily squandered scarce taxpayer resources at a time when state government is facing unprecedented demands,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax.

Many were surprised in March when Democrats who control the Maryland General Assembly passed these controversial tax hikes at a time when it was already clear that the pandemic-driven downturn was pushing many businesses to the brink.

“The fact that the Maryland legislature is dumping these tax proposals on them at this time of crisis is really something to be upset about,” Jeff Friedman, a partner at Eversheds Sutherland’s Washington D.C. office, told Bloomberg Tax shortly after Maryland lawmakers approved the digital ad tax last month.

Maryland state lawmakers recently announced that they will not return to Annapolis in May for a veto session, so Governor Hogan’s vetoes today will protect Maryland employers and families from these tax threats for the time being.