The coming expiration of the Internet Tax Freedom Act, which protects consumers from being taxed for Internet access, could provide the spur for leveling the playing field for brick-and-mortar stores with e-tailers.
After last week’s passage of H.R. 235, the Permanent Internet Tax Freedom Act, by the House of Representatives, RILA, the Retail Industry Leaders Association, called for it to be linked with the Marketplace Fairness Act of 2015. The act, which was introduced in March by Senators Alexander (R-TN), Dick Durbin (D-IL), Mike Enzi (R-WY), and Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), is nearly identical to one that the Senate passed with strong bipartisan support in 2013. Both bills would allow states to tax online retailers just like bricks-and-mortar stores and provide an exception for small e-tailers that do less than $1 million in remote sales.
Jennifer Safavian, executive v-p for government affairs at RILA, whose members account for more than $1.5 trillion in annual sales, said that "sales tax parity should be addressed as part of legislation extending the moratorium on taxing Internet access.”
“Both pieces of legislation enjoy broad bipartisan support and should be part of a package that can be sent to the President's desk this year." added Safavian.
According to CQ Roll Call, Senate Budget Chairman Enzi plans to press for a summer vote on an online sales tax collection mandate as an amendment to the House-passed proposal.
On Monday, House Oversight Chairman Jason Chaffetz introduced the Remote Transaction Parity Act, which would give states the authority to require all retailers that sell products in their state to collect the same sales taxes.