PEARL, MS -- The Mississippi Automatic Merchandising Association broke attendance records at its lobbyist luncheon, held on Feb. 28 here, demonstrating a growing commitment on the part of operators and suppliers to do their part to support the industry's interests on the legislative front. The group is pictured above at Uncle Buck's Restaurant inside Pearl's Bass Pro Shop.
Guests of honor at the annual event, where the association updates industry members on the legislative developments impacting their businesses, included Mississippi House Rep. Alex Monsour (R-Vicksburg) and Ron Aldridge, MAMA's lobbyist.
"We are happy to see to see the increased interest and activity in the vending industry in Mississippi," said Mary Lou Monaghan, senior manager of government affairs for the National Automatic Merchandising Association, of which MAMA is a state council.
Top on MAMA's legislative list is an inventory tax credit and rebate bill that could help vending businesses. The association is supporting H.B. 536, which is now awaiting a vote on the house floor with a deadline of March 28. It would increase the tax credit on inventory tax to $10,000 in 2014, up from the current credit of $5,000. Beginning in 2015, the bill allows businesses to apply for a tax credit or rebate of up to 20% of the total tax paid and then an additional 20% each year for the next four years.