Next week, PPAI's Legislative Education and Action Day (L.E.A.D.) takes the promotional products industry’s message to Capitol Hill. Running April 26-27, more than 80 industry professionals will speak with members of Congress about the effectiveness of promotional products and the strength of the industry in the U.S.

Tax reform will be a key element of the L.E.A.D. discussions, as Congress is expected to address the issue soon, and the introduction of a border adjustment tax (BAT) may be an important element of those reforms. Designed as a “pay-for” solution to cut income tax rates, the BAT would levy a 20-percent tax on all U.S. imports—including promotional products—and is anticipated to hurt American consumers and the nation's largest employers by increasing the cost of everyday products. PPAI staff have already traveled to Washington, D.C., this year to meet with members of the House of Representatives Ways and Means and Senate Finance committees to oppose the BAT. The Association has also joined a coalition of more than 400 like-minded business leaders, corporations and industry groups, Americans for Affordable Products, to oppose the tax, and hundreds of promotional products professionals have already contacted their representatives asking them to reject the proposal.

PPAI has also been working to educate members about the proposal and its impact on the industry. While it is true that most promotional products are manufactured overseas and imported to the U.S., once in the U.S., these products are sold by U.S. workers, and used to promote U.S. goods and services. Even more importantly, these products support thousands of U.S. factory jobs because most promotional products are imported as blanks and American workers apply the decorations domestically. The industry’s customers are unlikely to increase their marketing budgets by 20 percent to offset the effects of BAT. Rather, they will either buy fewer products, buy less expensive products or shift their advertising dollars to an advertising medium that will not be taxed. This will be detrimental to the promotional products industry.

Industry members can add their voices to the Association’s and tell their member of Congress to reject the border adjustment tax and instead focus on implementing tax reform that continues to spur economic growth without affecting American families. Follow this link to send a message to Congress: Proposed Border Adjustment Tax—Bad For The Promotional Products Industry. They can also join in the L.E.AD. participants in Washington, D.C., by taking part in the Virtual Fly-In and send letters to members of Congress on a variety of key issues.