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Maryland looks to pioneer taxes on digital advertising

January 13, 2020 / Erin Cox

Two powerful Maryland politicians want that ad chasing you around the Internet to pay the state for the privilege of collecting your data. Maryland’s current and former Senate presidents have proposed a novel way to pioneer taxes on targetted digital advertising, a plan they estimate could deliver more than USD100 million per year to help pay for a sweeping education overhaul. In what appears to be first-in-the-nation legislation, social media companies such as Facebook and Google would face as much as a 10 per cent tax on the revenue from digital ads that target Maryland IP addresses. It’s part of new Senate President Bill Ferguson’s effort to tap untaxed corners of the modern economy, and he deployed one of the state’s most savvy political minds to get it passed: his predecessor, Senate President Emeritus Thomas Mike Miller Jr.