IBJNews

Proposal would move up online sales tax collection

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share

Two lawmakers say they plan to introduce legislation in the new year that would require Amazon.com and other online-only retailers with a presence in Indiana to begin collecting sales tax on July 1, 2013, six months earlier than a deal brokered by Gov. Mitch Daniels last January.

State Rep. Ed DeLaney, D-Indianapolis, said Monday that it's unfair that Amazon and other online businesses aren't collecting the sales tax that businesses with brick-and-mortar stores are required to collect.

"There's no reason to give a tax preference to one part of the retail world and not to the rest. That's what we're doing right now," he said.

DeLaney said he believes the online companies should already be collecting the 7-percent sales tax, and that the legislation he and Rep. Tom Dermody, R-LaPorte, will introduce will clarify that. He said he doesn't believe tax collection should be based on private agreements.

Amazon said last year that it needed two years to get ready to properly collect the state's 7-percent sales tax from customers. Daniels announced in January that he had reached a deal with Amazon that it would begin collecting sales tax from Indiana customers in 2014.

The proposed legislation was announced on Cyber Monday, named for the expectation that it'll be the biggest online shopping day of the year.

"It would mean they would begin collecting the tax before another school year begins or another holiday season begins where the online businesses have a 7-percent advantage," Dermody said. "It would just even the playing field for everyone, and the sooner the better."

Indiana Merchants for Tax Fairness spokesman Grant Monahan said online retailers have a 7-percent advantage by not collecting the tax, which people owe but seldom pay on their own. The group is a coalition of more than 300 small-business owners from across Indiana.

"Retailers don't mind competition in the marketplace; in fact they thrive on it," Monahan told WISH-TV. "But they need competition on a level playing field."

Monahan said a statewide poll found that 69 percent of Indiana residents support "a level playing field" in the collection of sales taxes. A report released last week by the Indiana Fiscal Policy Institute and Ball State University researchers estimates the state "loses" about $77 million a year in sales taxes not collected on Internet purchases.

In March, Indiana House leaders headed off a vote for the state to begin collecting sales taxes from online retailers and override Daniels' deal with Amazon.

The state's current policy dates to a 2007 deal with Amazon for it to open its first warehouse in Indiana with the promise that lawmakers wouldn't push for online sales tax collection.

The AP left a telephone message seeking comment from Amazon on Monday.

ADVERTISEMENT

  • a deal is a deal
    I thought Mitch made the deal, how can you try and change it now? Amazon probably employs more than a few Hoosiers (better than some of the deals they have made with companies), so you change the agreement and Amazon leaves....why would you want to see more people unemployed. Honestly, even if they should change it, I will still shop online, no traffic, no parking issues.
  • Tax Fairness
    Where were the tax fairness complaints when the NFL sought and received tax avoidance for the super bowl?
  • Not Working in Illinois
    I'll be interested to see what this legislation actually includes. Maybe we should take a look at why this is NOT working in other states before we continue to push it here in Indiana. Check out this timely post from Brian Littleton, a business owner in Chicago. http://brianlittleton.shareist.com/the-continuing-affiliate-tax-issue-in-illinois/

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Only half a million TV Viewers? And thats an increase? I knew Indycar was struggling but I didn't know it was that bad. Hell, if NASCAR hits 5 Million viewers everyone starts freaking out saying its going down hill. It has a long way to before Indycar even hits NASCAR's bad days.

  2. IU has been talking that line for years with no real progress even with the last Dean, Dr. Brater. Why will an outsider, Dr. Hess, make a difference? With no proof of additional resources (cash in the bank), and a concrete plan to move an academic model that has been outdated for decades with a faculty complacent with tenure and inertia, I can count on IU to remain the same during the tenure of Dr. Hess. One ought to look to Purdue and Notre Dame for change and innovation. It is just too bad that both of those schools do not have their own medical school. Competition might wake up IU. My guess is, that even with those additions to our State, IU will remain in its own little world squandering our State's tax dollars. Why would any donor want to contribute to IU with its track record? What is its strategy to deal with the physician shortage for our State? New leadership will not be enough for us to expect any change.

  3. How do you think the Bridges got approved? I spent a couple days researching PAC's and individual contributions to some city council members during that time. My printouts were inches thick on the two I concentrated on. Finally gave up. Was disgusted with all the donations, and who they were from. Would have taken me days and days to compile a complete list. Tried to give it to the Star reporter, but he thought it was all just fine. (and apparently he was treated well himself) He ended up being laid off or fired though. And then of course, there was land donated to the dad's club, or city, as a partial payoff. All done in the shining example of "charity." No, none of these contributions are a coincidence.

  4. I agree what kind of help or if any will be there for Dr. Ley's patients. I was a patient myself.

  5. What about the hundreds of patients who sought this doctor for the right reasons, to quit drugs. what option do these patients now have, experience horrible withdrawl or return to heroin?? those are the choices. what about the children of these former addicts who's parent(s) WILL not b able to maintain their job, for @ least 2 weeks.. There needs to b an emergency clinic opened for these patients.

ADVERTISEMENT