Parkersburg Burger King manager looks for tax code change in Washington

Published: Mar. 6, 2019 at 4:06 PM EST
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The owner of a local Burger King franchise is trying to shake things up in Washington. Matthew Herridge is on Capitol Hill this week with questions for federal leaders about the tax code. He says he’s missing out on cash because of a screw up in the recently passed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

“We cannot grow as fast without that actually cash flow in our business. If we don’t have that cash flow we are going to be very challenged,” said Herridge.

Herridge owns several Burger Kings and Qdoba’s in the Parkersburg area. He says the 2017 tax code overhaul that is now law of the land did not come out as intended. Herridge thinks there is a mistake when it comes to getting tax deductions for making improvements to his stores. The example he gives - if he makes a $600,000 improvement to the Burger King on Division Street, under the new law he would get back $15,000 annually over 39 years as a tax benefit.

Under the old law, he would get $40,000 annually over 15 years. He thinks the change was an oversight and that they did not mean to change the payment schedule.

“We no longer get the tax benefits of new builds or remodeling our restaurants,” said Herridge.

He wants lawmakers to fix their mistake, but he understands Capitol Hill can move at a slow pace.

“We thought that we would be able to fix this at the end of last year,” said Brian Robison, the government relations chair for National Franchisee Association.

He says he sees support in Washington to make the tax code change.

“You’re going to get busier and you’re going to add jobs and you’re going to benefit the community that you’re doing business in,” said Robison.

Herridge and Robison are meeting with lawmakers from around the country over their four-day trip, including Senator Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV). Capito was not available for an interview.

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