New job-killing legislation is in the works

November 8, 2013 by Paul Byrne

Business Environment

Well, we had hoped this piece of job-killing legislation was dead, but, it’s big supporters are at it again. On the surface it seems fair, after all, it’s called the Marketplace Fairnesses Act. If my local brick and mortar store has to charge sales tax, why shouldn’t internet retailers?

However, there is a HUGE difference! A brick and mortar retailer selling in on location collects and pays taxes to a single authority in that location. It’s not a big burden. Believe me, I have done it. However, a small Internet retailer that sells nationwide from one location, would deal face more of a hassle. They would have to collect and pay taxes for 9600 different jurisdictions. In addition, they could potentially be audited by collectors from all 50 states! See my previous post on the small-business killing mechanisms built into this law.

Ebay, once again the champion of small business, is weighing in against the lobbyists from Internet mega-retailers. These large merchants would like nothing more than for this law to pass so they can kill small competitors. Please follow the link below to make your voice heard.

Here is the email I just received from our friends at eBay

Earlier this year we alerted Main Street members to a sales tax bill called the “Marketplace Fairness Act” which was considered by Congress. In May of this year the Senate passed this ill-advised bill and it is now being considered by the House of Representatives. If you want to help us protect the American public from new tax burdens, please [get involved now (see Advocacy Toolkit on linked page)] and help us fight this potentially harmful legislation.

If the Marketplace Fairness Act is allowed to become law, it could require small, internet-enabled businesses to collect sales taxes nationwide from the more than 9,600 tax jurisdictions. These same small businesses could face the prospect of being audited by tax collectors from other states. On behalf of our eBay Inc. community, we are pushing Congress to include meaningful protections for small businesses.

The good news is that hundreds of thousands of consumers and small business owners have contacted Capitol Hill to express their concerns. Despite this positive development, the bill’s supporters and their Washington lobbyists still want to get the bill through Congress by attaching it to important pieces of legislation that Congress must pass, such as a federal budget bill. Congress must fix the Senate bill by significantly increasing the small business exemption. That is why we need your help.

If you oppose attempts to force an unfair Internet sales tax bill into law, raise your voice and let your representatives in Congress know.

Thank you for helping to keep the Internet a fair and open marketplace for all.

Sincerely, Tod Cohen Vice President & Deputy General Counsel, Government Relations eBay Inc.

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