Tax could burn tan bed users - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Tax could burn tan bed users

DUBUQUE (KWWL) -- The new health care bill is turning up the heat on tanning salons or at least the people who use them. Upping taxes by 10 percent for tanners will generate $2.7 billion over ten years. Tanners and salon owners say this "tan tax" could have a big impact on business.

Keith Kettler just started tanning a few weeks ago.

"Trying to get in shape, just turned over 50 and thought this might kinda kick start things," said Kettler.

He says it boosts his metabolism and energy level. But soon his trips to the tanning bed will boost funding for health care.

"I would like a little color but I'm not out to get burnt," said Kettler.

Tuesday's Healthcare Reform Bill could burn Kettler's pocket. Digging deeper, it exposes a 10 percent tax on all tanners. A tax that will generate $2.7 billion.

"I would probably let nature run it's course and let summer get here and then get out there and get some natural rays," said Kettler.

But salon owners like Carrie Miller say this tax will burn salons too.

"In the industry where everyone's trying to get the best deal. It's gonna be harder for us to give a good deal," said Miller.

She says imposing a tax on users will make it difficult for owners to keep competitive and affordable rates. Not to mention it could shed a bad light on tanning.

"Why our industry because we're actually helping people, we're actually offering a service," said Miller

Miller says indoor tanning helps provide vitamin D to the body. And can help people like Kettler feel better. But whatever your reason for tanning, Miller and Kettler hope a tanning tax doesn't make this industry fade away.

The "tan tax" will go into effect July 1st and will apply to anyone using tanning beds; tanning lotion's don't fall under this new tax.

This tax replaced a proposed 5 percent proposed tax on cosmetic surgery, the so called "bo-tax."

Online Reporter: Lauren Squires

Follow Lauren on Twitter.

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