WBUR

Software Tax Is Subject Of State House Meeting

BOSTON — Gov. Deval Patrick and State House leaders have opened discussions with business leaders in an attempt to resolve a standoff over a new software services tax that some say will hobble the state’s “innovation economy.”

But there was no sign of a quick solution after their meeting Wednesday.

The new tax aims to raise $161 million to help pay for transportation investments, but business leaders say it reaches much further than that, and could cost taxpayers as much as $1 billion a year.

Michael Widmer, of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, says the meeting focused on the complexities of the software industry.

“And that you couldn’t somehow tax a discrete part of the software industry and that this really laced through everything,” he added.

Opponents say that if lawmakers don’t repeal the measure, they will take it to a statewide vote in November 2014.

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