Haslam To Pitch Online Sales Tax Collection to U.S. House Panel

Gov. Bill Haslam will testify beforef the U.S. House Judiciary Committee on Tuesday in support of federal legislation granting states the power to make all online retailers collect sales taxes.
From the Chattanooga TFP:”
He’ll be testifying about the Marketplace Equity Act and leveling the playing field between online retailers and brick and mortar businesses,” Haslam spokesman David Smith said in an email.
Many states, including Tennessee, have been clamoring for years to persuade Congress to resolve problems arising from a 1992 U.S. Supreme Court decision. The court held that retailers were only obligated to collect sales taxes from customers in states where the companies are physically located.
…The issue has been batted back and forth for years in Congress, but it’s picking up steam. U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said just this week in a news conference it could pass the Senate, according to The Hill newspaper. U.S. Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., a former governor, is one of the primary Senate sponsors.
The bill has the support of Internet retail giant Amazon, which has built distribution centers in Tennessee, including two near Chattanooga and Cleveland.
Amazon last year began striking deals with Republican governors or legislatures in several states, including Tennessee, to begin collecting sales taxes where the company has built distribution centers.

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