Tester, Shaheen, Merkley, Hassan Introduce Bill to Protect Businesses From Collecting Sales Taxes

(U.S. Senate)—U.S. Senators Jon Tester (D-Mont.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), and Maggie Hassan (D-N.H.) are leading the charge against forcing small businesses to collect online sales taxes for other states.

The Senators introduced the Stop Taxing Our Potential (STOP) Act today to overturn the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision that forces local businesses to collect sales taxes on behalf of other states when their residents purchase goods and services online—even when those businesses are located in states that don’t have sales taxes.  The Supreme Court case, State of South Dakota vs. Wayfair, overturns 26 years of precedent that protected businesses from collecting and remitting sales taxes to other states.

“Montanans oppose a sales tax and our businesses shouldn’t be forced to collect a sales tax to shore up the finances of other states,” Tester said.  “This bill reflects the overwhelming sentiment of Montanans and defends our state’s businesses from getting into the sales tax business.”

“The Supreme Court got this ruling horribly wrong. New Hampshire small businesses shouldn’t be forced to collect sales taxes for other states,” said Shaheen. “Congress and the Trump administration should work in concert to stop new red tape from hurting American businesses and our local and national economies. That’s why I’m cosponsoring Senator Tester’s legislation to overturn the Supreme Court’s ruling, and will continue to explore other avenues to help businesses that will be affected.”

“Oregonians have rejected a sales tax time and time again,” said Merkley. “This bill stands up for the views of Oregon voters while protecting our small business owners from an unwanted burden.”

“New Hampshire’s small businesses, which are the backbone of our economy, have made clear that a mandatory internet sales tax collection requirement would negatively impact them by creating a complex web of red tape and hindering growth,” Senator Hassan said. “This bill is critical to ensuring that businesses and consumers in no-sales-tax states like New Hampshire are not burdened by the Supreme Court’s decision to allow states to mandate internet sales tax collection. I will continue to stand up for New Hampshire’s innovative small businesses, and I urge my colleagues to support this bill.”

The Supreme Court decided last week—with tie-breaking vote by Justice Neil Gorsuch—that states have the authority to impose a sales tax on purchases made over the internet.  Local businesses would be required to collect the sales tax and send the funds to the state where the customer resides.

As a result of the decision, local businesses could be required to remit sales taxes to nearly 9,800 state and local tax jurisdictions across the United States.

The STOP Act is available HERE.