Vermont considers software tax to help fund water programs

May 13, 2019

MONTPELIER, Vt. (AP) — The Vermont House of Representatives has passed a proposal to help clean up Lake Champlain by imposing a tax on remotely accessed software.

But leaders in the Vermont technology industry say the plan for the 6% tax could hinder a growing sector of the state’s economy.

The proposal passed the House on Friday. If approved by the Senate, the money would be used to replace funds taken from elsewhere in the state budget to pay for the Clean Water Fund.

Democratic state Rep. Janet Ancel says no one likes a tax, but almost 20 other states already impose a similar cloud tax.

Robbie Adler, of the Burlington software company Faraday, says in the “hyper-competitive” atmosphere among states trying to attract tech companies, a new tax won’t help Vermont’s cause.