Did the GOP victory end hope of the sales tax fairness bill’s passage?
The National Retail Federation (NRF) is making a push to get the House of Representatives to debate and vote on sales tax fairness legislation before the end of the lame duck session. The reason is simple: NRF believes it may become more difficult to pass a bill requiring online retailers to collect sales taxes in the next session when Republicans will hold voting majorities in both the House and Senate.
The Senate passed the Marketplace Fairness Act, a measure supported by NRF, in 2013. A similar bill has not been taken up and voted on by the House. David French, senior vice president at NRF, wrote in a blog post on the association’s site that legislation in the House has stalled "over unfounded concerns and misinformation spread by opponents."
The NRF’s lobbying of the current Congress has included in-person meetings with congressional members, calls from the group’s members, interviews and op-eds with media, as well as a PR campaign that includes televisions commercials, newspaper ads, and online banners and video.
A video on YouTube claims, "Every night across the country hundreds of small businesses close their doors forever, going out of business because government created an unfair playing field."
"Opponents [of sales tax fairness legislation] claim they are protecting consumers against new taxes and small online sellers against huge compliance burdens," wrote Matthew Shay, president and CEO of NRF, in a recent op-ed. "But the truth is that failure to act would do far more to harm both consumers and small businesses."
On the compliance issue, Mr. Shay wrote that the legislation being considered would require states to provide businesses with free software to make "sales tax collection as easy as calculating postage."
- Local retailers need sales tax fairness – National Retail Federation/YouTube
- Lame Duck Could Be Last Chance for Sales Tax Fairness – National Retail Federation
- Online sales tax a needed boost for states, cities, local retailers and nation’s economy – McClatchy-Tribune News Service/The Island Packet
Do you agree with the National Retail Federation that passage of sales tax fairness legislation may become more difficult in the new Congress? Why do you think there is so much resistance to legislation that has the backing of the vast majority of retailers?