Internet Purchases Will be Subject to Taxes
It seems like forever since the Senate began debate on a bill that would create an equal playing field for “brick and mortar” stores, and sales over the internet.
At present, purchases are taxed if the business has an actual physical presence in the state. This bill would allow states to tax all sales over the web. Here in Nevada, the legislation would increase the state’s revenue by an estimated $100,000,000.
In addition to the added revenue, taxing all sales would put the internet seller and businesses which face the expenditures of maintaining a physical retail space on equal footing.
I must caution you, this isn’t going to happen tomorrow. Although the Senate voted to end the debate by a vote of 63-30, they won’t be voting on it until May 6th. You see, they’ve worked so hard, they’re going on a weeks, (or more), vacation. What a job! (I hope they have to fly home on commercial airlines, and they feel the delays they are responsible for.)
Opponents of the bill hope the week will give those angry with the legislation time to voice their opinions. It appears it will pass in the Senate. Some Republicans in the House have already voiced their incorrect opinion that it is simply another tax. Holy Grover Norquist!
The President says he favors the legislation, and will sign it into law when and if it is passed.
Retailers who have lobbied for the legislation for quite some time celebrated Thursday.
“The special treatment of big online businesses at the expense of retailers on Main Street will soon be a thing of the past,” said Bill Hughes of the Retail Industry Leaders Association. “The overwhelmingly bipartisan support for leveling the playing field is rare in today’s political environment and paves the way for a level playing field once and for all.”
A small number of Senators, whose states have no sales tax, oppose the bill, led by Senator Ron Wyden, (D), from Oregon.
There will be a number of regulations which will require states to collect taxes which in turn must be rendered to other states, but retailers say this law is all about fairness in business.
There is a definite possibility that the consumer may benefit the most from the legislation. Both sides will be competing for the buyer’s dollar on equal ground. Maybe, to compensate for the tax, online sellers will eliminate, or at least lower, what are often expensive ‘shipping and handling charges’.
Columnist-The Guardian Express