[ SHOWGSD-L ] Re: CA - Ca tax officials target breeder via internet (using AKC website -Long

  • From: Stormy Hope <Stormy435@xxxxxxx>
  • To: SHOWGSD-L <showgsd-l@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Tue, 30 Jun 2009 08:50:42 -0700

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CA - Ca tax officials target breeder via internet (using AKC website



Mon Jun 29, 2009 9:35 pm (PDT)





Business & Economics





California tax officials target breeders via Internet



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Article - California tax officials target breeders via Internet)



June 29, 2009

By: Timothy Kirn

For The VIN News Service



_http://news.vin.com/VINNews.aspx?articleId=13238_

(http://news.vin.com/VINNews.aspx?articleId=13238)



California tax officials are surfing — the Internet, that is.



It is not unusual for authorities, potential employers, bankers and  
others

to use the Internet to investigate people.



And now California tax officials are targeting potential breeders that

way.



According to a letter from the California Board of Equalization, board

officials visited the American Kennel Club Web site and linked to  
individual

dog clubs to identify potential breeders living in the state.



Board officials are not sure if these dog club members are breeders, but

they could be.



Tax board spokeswoman Anita Gore confirmed that 361 individuals will

receive the letter. She would not say how or why those particular  
individuals

were identified, however.



Gore also said the board was unapologetic about using the Internet to

identify potential breeders. The Internet is a research tool, like any  
other,

and a fairly popular one, she said.



Though a few blogs have speculated that the state might be groping

gracelessly for funds with this effort, due to the California  
government's

financial distress, Gore said the letters are a typical education and  
outreach

effort that the board periodically makes.



Breeders are in the spotlight because "quite often people who sell  
animals

are not aware of this tax obligation,” Gore said.



According to California tax law, anyone who sells more than two  
animals a

year must have a seller’s permit and pay the state a sales tax.



Fifty letters have been sent out so far, Gore said. The rest will be

mailed in the coming weeks. The letter states that the recipient must  
respond

and let the board know whether he or she has a permit, would like to  
apply

for one or does not need one because he or she does not sell animals.



Board members have received no complaints about the letters, Gore said.

But at least a few are concerned.



Dawn Capp, an attorney and animal advocate, said the fact that the board

has used the American Kennel Club Web site and other dog club Web  
sites is

going to upset some people who will ask not to be listed so they  
cannot be

targeted. That will limit resources for the general public, as people  
visit

club Web sites searching for information and help.



“It definitely is going to have a chilling effect on information,” said

Capp, founder of the Coalition of Human Advocates for K9s and Owners  
(CHAKO).

Capp _posted a notice about the letters on the CHAKO blog_

(http://news.vin.com/Link.plx?ID=70527) and alerted a number of other  
bloggers about the

issue, who have also posted notices.



Capp said it is heavy-handed of the state to target people just because

they are members of a dog club. She also said that when she called the  
board,

she was told that it will pursue people who do not respond to the first

letter with a second letter and might investigate if that second  
letter is

ignored.



“The problem is that this is a very Big-Brother type of mentality,” she

said. “They don’t know whether anyone is a breeder. There are all  
kinds of

dog clubs out there. It sends the message that you are presumed guilty

until proven innocent.”



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