A few weeks ago I brought you the not-so-merry news that President Obama was going to impose a 15 cent tax on all fresh cut Christmas trees in order to pay for a big, fancy government advertising campaign about...Christmas trees. Well, today there is good news, Obama has officially nixed the Christmas Tree tax plan.
The Department of Agriculture (Department) published in the Federal Register on November 8, 2011, (76 FR 69094) a final rule that established a Christmas Tree Promotion, Research, and Information Order (Order). This Order was issued pursuant to the Commodity Promotion, Research, and Information Act of 1996 (7 U.S.C. 7411-7425). While we are confident that the Christmas Tree program is compliant with all applicable law and supported by the domestic Christmas tree industry, the program will be stayed to provide additional time for the Department to reach out to the Christmas Tree industry and the public to explain how a research and promotion program is a producer driven program to support American farmers.
Accordingly, the regulations establishing the Order published November 8, 2011 (76 FR 69094) are stayed indefinitely.