Jerry Cerasale

Jerry Cerasale, senior vice president of government affairs for the Direct Marketing Association (DMA), will testify this afternoon at a hearing of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, & Transportation entitled, “What Information Do Data Brokers Have On Consumers, and How Do They Use It?” In his testimony, Cerasale will discuss the important role that responsible collection and use of marketing data plays in aiding consumers and fueling the United States economy. The hearing follows a year-long investigation by Senator Jay Rockefeller (D-WV), Chairman of the Commerce Committee, into the practices of “ ‘data brokers’ that compile and sell information about consumers.”

Next month will mark a new beginning for Jerry Cerasale, a man whose countless contributions to marketers over the past four decades have served us immensely. After a career of public service and advocacy on behalf of direct marketing, Jerry is about to start a next chapter—more time with his family endeavors on his schedule, not those of Congress, the U.S. Postal Service or the Direct Marketing Association and coalitions in which he has represented us so brilliantly

The DMA has announced the appointment of Peggy Renken Hudson as senior vice president, government affairs. Hudson brings to DMA a broad and powerful policymaking network, the ability to build coalitions and strategic alliances. She has successfully led lobbying on a number of initiatives, including three comprehensive energy bills, a bill supporting the Alaska Gas Pipeline, legislation on highway and airport construction, and legislation to increase the deductibility of small business health insurance costs

August 6 marked the mid-point of summer—so now we're closer to summer's end than summer's beginning. It's as if all the back-to-school advertising wasn't enough to have us looking forward (except perhaps for schoolchildren). In the world of data-driven marketing, my mailbox reminded me this past week, too, that fall is just around the corner: I received a DMA2013 conference brochure mailer

“The Senate’s decision to authorize a new Internet and remote sales tax system is an unfortunate misstep that will harm many small Internet and catalog businesses. We’re disheartened by the lack of diligence and dialogue in fully weighing the added costs and complexities under this new tax system.” Cerasale added, “This legislation leaves too many important questions unanswered and fails to meet the minimum level of simplification outlined by the TruST coalition. This is not a sustainable model.” TruST calls on legislators to guarantee the following minimum simplification requirements

DMA opposes a proposed amendment to the FY 2014 Federal Budget that would endorse the Marketplace Fairness Act, a new Internet sales tax. DMA asserts that the Act, including the section codifying the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement, does not provide the needed harmonization across state taxing structures. Neither does it sufficiently reduce the deficiencies that led the Supreme Court in its 1992 Quill v. North Dakota decision. Endorsement of the Act should not be considered in discussions on the Federal Budget.

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