This letter is in response to the concerns raised both by the architectural profession and the printing and duplicating ["reprographic"] industry with respect to the sales and use tax treatment of the sale of blueprints.
Prior to the imposition of the sales tax on architectural services, architects paid sales tax on the purchase price of the blueprints. With the enactment of the sales tax on their services, architects have voiced their concern that the sales tax will be imposed both at the time of their purchase of all reprographic work and again on the bill to their clients when they have not consumed the printing and duplicating, but have merely passed them on in the performance of their services for their clients. The reprographic industry, in turn, has asked the Department for guidance in this area to ensure certainty in their billing practices.
After a thorough analysis of the problems faced by both parties, it is our decision to permit the use of resale certificates in the purchase of printing and duplicating that will not be consumed by the architect.
In making this ruling, I caution both the architects and the reprographic industry that it is incumbent upon them to exercise good judgment and good faith in their use and acceptance of resale certificates. As participants in the profession, both parties are charged with having the knowledge that certain types of printing and duplicating are typically used for certain purposes, i.e., either they are consumed by the architect or are passed through in the rendering of architectural services for a client. Consumption or use by the architect includes any use by the architect other than a direct pass through to their clients or others involved in the bid process.
The Department expects architects to be forthright in their use of resale certificates and to pay tax in those situations where they are the consumers of printing and duplicating. The use of blanket resale certificates will be scrutinized closely by the Department. We expect the reprographic industry to meet the good faith requirement set forth in section 12-410 of the Connecticut General Statutes and section 12-426-1 of the Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies.
At the inception of these rules, the Department recognizes that there will be some "grey areas" and marginal situations. Where equity dictates, the Department will seek the use tax from the architects.
TIMOTHY F. BANNON
September 20, 1989