Senate to Vote on Internet Sales Tax Legislation Monday
April 19, 2013 10:48 AM
Those in support of the legislation say they have the 60 votes needed
Recent reports say a vote on legislation regarding the collection of
online sales taxes
could come as early as next week.
This new legislation would allow U.S. states to collect online sales taxes from Internet retailers -- as long as these retailers have physical stores or affiliates within their borders.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid filed a motion in support of the new legislation on Thursday, and now, the Senate is expected to vote next Monday on whether or not to move ahead with it. Some say they've achieved the 60 votes needed to move forward.
While this still gives many online-only retailers a huge advantage, it would still be a win for brick-and-mortar stores like Wal-Mart and Best Buy.
The brick-and-mortars have complained that online-only stores have received an unfair advantage by not having to collect sales tax because it attracts customers to the lower prices. Customers are then supposed to self-report these taxes to the state, but this rarely happens -- and states would love to get their hands on the money that comes from Internet sales taxes.
For instance, the California Board of Equalization said it made $96.4 million in
sales tax on internet commerce
from September-December 2012, which is the first full quarter that the state started collecting.
Amazon is one of the main online retailers with a target on its back when it comes to online sales taxes. It has been fighting U.S. states that force it to collect sales tax for years (except in Kansas, Kentucky, New York, North Dakota and Washington). The e-tailer fled many states that attempted to force tax collection on the company, such as
But eventually, Amazon finally broke down and started collecting sales tax in certain states, which allowed it to build more distribution centers within those states. For instance, Amazon announced that it would
collect sales tax in New Jersey
last May so that two Amazon distribution centers could be built. This led to faster shipping for customers, such as
Amazon's same-day delivery
program, making it more competitive than ever.
Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos said many times that his company would agree to collect taxes if there were some sort of federal legislation.
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