SaaS Bill Even Better After Amendments

Senate Bill 257 (Sales Tax on Software) took a very positive turn this week when it was amended by the House Ways and Means Committee. After hearing considerable testimony from members of the Chamber’s Technology and Innovation Policy Committee in a hearing last week, it appears the message was received! That message: It would be beneficial to the software industry to provide simple clarity regarding the exempt status of software as a service (SaaS).

The Ways and Means Committee amendment deleted a good amount of language that we were concerned could raise new questions and run counter to the objective of reducing uncertainty about software transactions.

These changes make clear that it is only in the case where prewritten software is delivered electronically (downloaded) that the transaction is considered a retail sale subject to sales tax. And when someone buys the right to remotely access software, the transaction is not taxed. Through these positive amendments, the bill now more directly serves the objective of clarifying that SaaS transactions – those involving the use of software to essentially provide a service – are excluded from taxation.

The Indiana Chamber has been making the case for the need to eliminate the previously existing ambiguous language and convincing legislators that a clear, simple, straightforward piece of legislation can reap very real economic benefits. Our efforts are reflected in this much streamlined version of SB 257. We thank the Ways and Means Committee for listening to our members and taking this important step forward to demonstrate the Legislature’s commitment to embracing the growth of the SaaS industry in Indiana. The revised bill puts Indiana in a very favorable position to attract more and more of this burgeoning industry to our state.

Innovations that Never Quite Got Off the Ground

One thing we can all agree on: entrepreneurship and innovation are the backbones of a thriving society. But in order for success to be achieved, trial and error must always take place. The Huffington Post provides a look at some inventions that never quite took off. See them here.

My favorite is probably the Sun Pod:

Thankfully this 80’s prototype never caught on. In theory it was for those seeking peace and quiet on the beach, but in practice it would basically be a human oven.

Conexus Round Tables Bring Economic Issues to Fore

Conexus Indiana is hosting a series of round tables throughout the state this fall to address some of the key issues facing Indiana. The goal of each discussion will be to examine and brainstorm with professional experts in order to learn how Indiana can become a logistical stronghold in the various industries that impact different parts of the state.

"It’s a chance to provide insight on the infrastructure needs, policy challenges and workforce gaps that must be tackled to put Indiana on the map as a global logistics hub," says spokesman Luke LaBeau.

Here is the upcoming schedule, with each round table discussing issues that impact the corresponding area of the state. For more information, call the listed contact:

Sept. 25 – Portage, 4-6 p.m. EST
Northwest Indiana Forum Auditorium
Contact: Karen Lauerman – (219) 763-6303 ext. 181

Oct. 2 – Fort Wayne, 3-5 p.m. EST
Summit Club
Contact: Kathleen Randolph – (260) 459-1400 ext. 4502

Oct. 10 – Muncie, 9-11 a.m. EST
Ball State Alumni Center
Contact: Roy Bud – (765) 254-1420

Oct. 14 – Evansville, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. EST
Ivy Tech
Contact: Greg Wathen – (812) 423-2020

Nov. 14 – Plainfield, 9-11 a.m. EST
Brightpoint
Contact: Joyce Zwierlein – (317) 707-2382

Nov. 19 – Notre Dame, 10 a.m. – 12 p.m. EST
Center for Continuing Education
Contact: Robert Bernhard – (574) 631-1862