Internet Sales Tax Bill Debate - | Nashville News, Weather & Sports

Internet Sales Tax Bill Debate

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by Janet Kim

NASHVILLE, Tenn. - It's an ongoing debate that may soon come to a conclusion, should all online retailers collect a state sales tax from consumers?

The Senate just passed the Marketplace Fairness Act, which will go to the House.

If you've ever needed blank video tapes or DVDs, might sound familiar. Since the online retailer is based in Nashville, Tennesseans already pay a sales tax for their purchases.

"I do think there is probably some legitimate reason that retailers have that they're having to compete with someone who doesn't have to collect tax," said Steve Roche, owner of

Currently, online businesses without a physical presence in a state are not obliged to collect tax from customers.

However, if the MarketPlace Fairness Act passes, that will change for businesses like

"We'll have to update systems to account for those systems and what the account should be, and remit that tax to 40 some odd states that have a sales tax," said Roche.

The act will exempt small businesses, those that make under a million dollars in revenue like Nashville retailer, Life View Outdoors.

"Right now our sales our below the cut off to collect the state sales tax nationally, and I don't know what the outcome will be, but it kind of makes you wonder if you should curb your success," said Mike Merryman.

Only five states don't collect a sales tax: Alaska, Delaware, Montana, New Hampshire and Oregon.

Tennessee, on the other hand, has one of the highest sales tax rates in the country which means consumers could soon be paying up to 9.75 percent in taxes for those online purchases.


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