When North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper signed House Bill 434 into law on July 25, a law that exempts the retail sales of legal tender coins and currency and precious metals bullion from sales and use taxes in that state, it became the fourth state thus far in 2017 where Liberty Coin Service Communications Officer Patrick A. Heller helped to change a law.
Said Heller, “North Carolina is now the 36th state with a complete or partial sales tax exemption on coin and bullion sales. On June 23, Louisiana re-adopted a similar exemption (HB 396) that had been suspended as part of a sweeping suspension of 285 sales tax exemptions and tax credits in early 2016 in that state. On May 30, Minnesota enacted a similar sales tax exemption (part of omnibus bill H1A) for the first time. On February 22, Virginia extended an expiring precious metals sales and use tax exemption and expanded it to include rare coins (HB 1668). I traveled to North Carolina and Louisiana to meet with legislators, state revenue staff, lobbyists, and coin dealers to provide documentation to support passage of these bills. I worked with the lobbyists and coin dealers in the other two states by providing the same documentation. I had traveled to Indiana and Ohio in 2015 and 2016, which adopted similar exemptions last year. These successes were the result of combined efforts by coin dealers in those states, by resources provided by the Industry Council for Tangible Assets (ICTA, the national trade association for rare coin and precious metals dealers), and lobbyists to work with legislators and state fiscal, treasury, and revenue staff. We are already gearing up for efforts in multiple states in 2018.”
Heller continued, “Because of my previous work as a certified public accountant, I have become the national expert on sales and use tax collections on retail sales of rare coins and precious metals bullion. Twenty years ago, I led the successful effort for Michigan to adopt a similar sales and use tax exemption. At the time, I projected that the Michigan Treasury sales tax collections would increase as a result of this exemption. The exemption was enacted in 1999. In 2012, I documented that a net increase in sales taxes had occurred as a result of a 65% increase in the number of Michigan coin dealerships, more than a 100% increase in industry employment, more than a 300% increase in retail sales by coin dealers of other merchandise still subject to sales tax, and additional attendance at a growing number of in-state coin shows generating more business for the lodging and restaurant industries. My documentation has since been used to help achieve or expand similar sales and use tax exemptions in twelve other states.”
At Heller’s urging, in 2016 ICTA conducted a national coin dealer survey. The results confirmed that states with complete or partial rare coin and precious metals bullion sales tax exemptions experience business and jobs growth and almost certainly collect more sales tax per capita than do states that tax such merchandise.
Frequently-honored Liberty Coin Service, founded in 1971, is Michigan’s largest rare coin and precious metals dealership. It has been located in Lansing’s Frandor Shopping Center since 1975. Communications Officer, and former owner, Patrick A. Heller calls himself the “Unofficial Artist” of the 2004 Michigan Statehood Quarter for being the primary author of the written instructions supplied to US Mint Engraver Donna Weaver to create the master dies for that coin issue.
The Industry Council for Tangible Assets was established in 1983 as a national trade association to advocate on behalf of coin and precious metals bullion dealers. In addition to serving ICTA as a consultant for state sales and use tax exemption efforts, Liberty Coin Service’s Patrick A. Heller has been a member of its board of directors and served as the organization’s treasurer since 2002.