State sales taxMaryland Comptroller Louis L. Goldstein...


State sales tax

Maryland Comptroller Louis L. Goldstein says his office is receiving as many as 100 calls a day from businesses affected by changes in the state sales tax. The changes, enacted by the 1991 General Assembly, went into effect June 1.

Among the changes:

* Soft drinks in cups are no longer treated as food, and are taxable -- just like soft drinks in cans or bottles.

* Sales of food in vending machines is taxable.

* Sales of food by carry-out food vendors, other than grocery stores or markets, are taxable.

* The exemption for food sales less than $1 is repealed. The tax now begins with sales of 20 cents.

* Cigarettes are subject to sales tax.

Businesses with questions about the new regulations can call 225-1300 in the Baltimore area or 1-800-492-1751 from other parts of Maryland.


To Peter Braun, creator of the Powergolf seminar, "Golf is not just a game; it's a business strategy."

Mr. Braun, a Chicago-based entrepreneur who also is president of a company that exports golf equipment to Europe, says Powergolf teaches behavioral psychology and relationship- building, skills that come into play in a four-hour recreational retreat with a business client or associate.

The Powergolf seminar, typically conducted in one-day sessions, teaches corporate golfers what to do if they notice someone cheating (Hint: Power silence can be a virtue, especially if the culprit is your Power boss) and how to spot other character flaws that likely spill over into business practices.

"We don't teach people to be rules policemen," said Mr. Braun. "We do teach etiquette. Rules, after all, are boundaries that men put on other men to control them. Etiquette is a set of principles and philosophies that men impose upon themselves."

Mr. Braun's seminar puts forth five key components of golfing comportment -- integrity, honesty, humility, ethics and leadership. And it divides the 18 holes of a course into three "Powerzones" for working a business client: the first six holes to create a foundation for a relationship, the next six to enhance the rapport and the final six to cement the friendship before heading into the crucial "19th hole" where deals frequently are done.

Mr. Braun said his six-figure start-up costs represent "the investment of my life," but he noted he has been approached by investors seeking to buy the rights to the seminar for Japan, New Zealand and Australia.

Mr. Braun prices the "tuition" at $199 for the one-day seminar up to $499 for a VIP weekend, which includes a round of golf and an inspirational speaker.

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