ICYMI: Rick Green Editorial on Internet Sales Tax

(IT is not just an internet sales tax. But the entire internet that will be taxed up to 16%. The FCC is voting soon on this.

– promoted by Rob “EaBo Clipper” Eno

In case you missed it, MassFiscal Chairman Rick Green had an op-ed published in the Boston Globe this past weekend concerning the so-called “Marketplace Fairness Act,” the name advocates of an stepped-up enforcement and collection of an Internet sales tax use for their proposals.

The beginning of Rick’s article is reproduced below. The piece was published as part of a debate on the question, and you can read the whole thing here.

“Should Internet Retailers be Required to Collect State Sales Taxes?”

January 4, 2015

The Boston Globe

By: Rick Green

The Marketplace Fairness Act (Internet sales tax) has been hailed by state governments as a cure to lower revenue during the economic downturn. Surprisingly, it is also supported by large retailers like Home Depot and Amazon.

The Internet sales tax is not new, though. Rather, it is an existing tax that goes uncollected. Most sales taxes in the US are actually “sales and use” taxes. That means that consumers buying goods on the Internet are liable for use taxes in their home state, but states don’t collect them for both economic and political reasons. Economically, collection costs exceed the potential revenue, and politically there are few elected officials willing to run on a platform of universal tax audits.

The Internet tax appeals to state and local governments because it solves the political problem. Using the federal government to force out-of-state businesses to collect taxes removes local politicians from the line of fire. The economic problem still remains, though. The exorbitant cost of collecting the taxes has simply been shifted onto businesses.

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