Online Sales Tax Debate

December 20, 2010

Why are some Internet purchases subject to sales tax, while others aren’t? Is anyone working to make different sales taxes coordinate with each other? Do states agree on how to divvy up tax revenue from multi-state transactions? These are common questions we get, and we’ve even written a little primer on them. (More links at the bottom.)

Two very well informed experts on the topic recently debated (well, more of a relaxed discussion) the issue on C-SPAN’s Communicators show. Scott Peterson of the Streamlined Sales Tax Governing Board urges greater power to states to collect sales taxes and level the playing field between online and brick-and-mortar retailers. Jerry Cerasale of the Direct Marketing Association points out how complex sales taxes are and warns that states can do serious damage to the economy if allowed to impose taxes on out-of-state businesses. 30 minutes long.

Other reading:

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