The legislation would help level the playing field between brick-and-mortar and online retailers
(NEW YORK) - Jewelers of America (JA), the national trade association for businesses serving the fine jewelry retail marketplace, welcomes the introduction of the Main Street Fairness Act, which would close an Internet sales tax loophole that has hurt traditional jewelry businesses.
On July 29, Sen. Dick Durban (D-IL) introduced the Act (S. 1452), which encourages states to require out-of-state sellers (including online and catalog retailers) to collect sales tax. Rep. John Conyers (D-MI) introduced identical legislation (H.R. 2701) in the House of Representatives.
Jewelers of America is a longtime proponent of sales tax fairness, supporting efforts to enact legislation on the federal and state level. In June, the association kicked off its latest national campaign for sales tax fairness. More than 200 businesses have already taken action. Members and non-members can still use JA’s Legislative Action Center, at capwiz.jewelers.org, to contact their representatives and urge them to support the Main Street Fairness Act today (www.capwiz.com/jewelers/go/JA_Efairness).
Internet and remote sellers have had a tax advantage over brick-and-mortar businesses since 1992, when the Supreme Court made a ruling that barred states from requiring that remote sellers collect sales taxes. The decision was based on the complexity of collecting taxes for so many different jurisdictions. However, the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement (SSUTA) - approved by 34 states and the District of Columbia - has simplified the process, bringing about changes that enable remote sellers to use streamlined electronic systems to collect various taxes.
In addition to the introduction of federal legislation, there’s been a recent groundswell of support for sales tax fairness in the states. California, Connecticut and Illinois are among several states that have passed sales tax fairness legislation.
“Jewelers of America applauds the efforts to level the playing field between traditional retailers and their online counterparts with Friday’s introduction of the Main Street Fairness Act,” says President & CEO Matthew A. Runci. “The heightened activity around the issue demonstrates that momentum is building for sales tax fairness.”