Washington, DC — January 30, 2002 — “Food retailers across America join President Bush in calling for tax cuts to stimulate the economy. In particular, we applaud his State-of-the-Union message last night to kill the death tax permanently,” said Tim Hammonds, president and CEO of the Food Marketing Institute (FMI).

“In fact, we can start now with the amendment introduced yesterday by Senator Jon Kyl (R-AZ) to make permanent the estate tax repeal provisions enacted last June. As it stands now, the tax would be fully repealed for only one year, 2010, due to sunset provisions in the tax law. And then, to make matters worse, this tax would be reinstated, along with its rates as high as 60 percent.

“Until permanent repeal is certain, family businesses must continue to pay for high-cost life insurance policies, estate tax planners and tax attorneys. These expenses total more than $12 billion a year, according to the CONSAD Research Corporation (The Federal Estate Tax: An Analysis of Three Prominent Issues).

“Burying the death tax permanently will enable family businesses to begin investing those billions in the economy, creating jobs and expanding services — in short, providing a powerful stimulus for their long-term survival.”