Senate debates online sales tax proposal - Toledo News Now, Breaking News, Weather, Sports, Toledo

Senate debates online sales tax proposal

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(Toledo News Now) -

The U.S. Senate is taking up debate on a measure to require major online retailers to collect state sales taxes.

It's called the Marketplace Fairness Act, and the current bill calls for online sellers with more than $1 million in annual out-of-state sales to collect state sales taxes.

Paula Brown says competition from online retailers has impacted her business, the Paula Brown Shop, and she counters that competition by rolling out the red carpet for people coming into her store, knowing they can go home and shop online for the same products without paying state sales taxes.

"Every day it affects our business," Brown said. "When they come here we have to make our store really, really special."

According to a report from the National Conference of State Legislatures, in 2012, states lost more than $23 billion in tax revenue due to online sales. Lucas County Commissioner Tina Skeldon Wozniak says besides helping to restore local government funding, she believes the measure has the potential to create jobs at the local level.

"That is probably one of the biggest things we can do to help the local economy is to create an opportunity for local business to have us feel going into their doors is extremely beneficial, because the sales tax playing field is even," she said.

Commissioner Pete Gerken agrees.

"I stopped by Titgemeier's yesterday looking for bird food and mousetraps, stuff you need every day. You can get that online, but the guy that's been in business on South Avenue for 75 years loses."

Opponents have argued the measure would create a massive burden for companies to meet tax laws in various states.      

For more information about the proposal, click here.  

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