It has been a super busy summer here at ERA. There has been lots going on at the FTC, with our self-regulation program ERSP, and with Congress (believe it or not).
In preparation for the 2017 ERA D2C Convention at the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas, I wanted to make sure that you do not forget about the Online Sales Tax issue in all the excitement.
In a recently released national telephone and online survey, Rasmussen Reports found that 66 percent of American adults oppose a sales tax in their state of items they have purchased online, even if the store they buy them from is not in their state. Further, the survey found that just 21 percent of respondents favoured an internet sales tax while 13 percent responded as unsure.
That’s a decent amount of Americans who feel strongly about this!
However, while the public has firmly decided which side of this issue they are on, state legislatures and Congress continue to get pushed by state tax collectors to circumvent the will of the people and force remote retailers to collect taxes.
Earlier this summer, the House Subcommittee on Regulatory Reform, Commercial and Antitrust Law had a hearing on the No Regulation Without Representation Act of 2017 (H.R. 2887). The proposal from Jim Sensenbrenner (R-WI) was popular with the industry, but caught state tax collectors off guard. You can read more about how the hearing turned out here.
Not widely known, ERA partners with other industry associations on a coalition called TruST which stands for True Simplification of Taxation. The mission of the coalition is to ensure that you have a seat at the table when the public policy conversation revolves around Online Sales Tax.The bottom line is the Online Sales Tax issue isn’t going away anytime soon. You can expect to hear more in Congress moving forward. It is becoming clearer that a federal solution might be needed for all of the state nuisance legislation and regulatory activity of recent years.
About the Author
Bill McClellan serves as ERA's Vice President of Government Affairs. Prior to joining the association, Bill worked as a lobbyist at the Georgia Automobile Dealers Association, covering the state legislature and Georgia's congressional delegation. Before working for the GADA, Bill managed political campaigns at both the congressional and state constitutional levels.