Gov. Inslee Throws Support Behind Internet Sales Tax
He's signed off on a letter urging Washington state legislators to vote in favor of a proposed internet sales tax.
Technically called "The Marketplace and Internet Tax Fairness Act" of 2014, it's essentially an attempt by Congress to "level the playing field" between internet sales and what are called "brick and mortar" stores.
The measure would allow states to levy sales taxes on out-of-state companies who do business here. So, if you buy products, say from a company in CA, you would have a WA state sales tax slapped on. There's a host of intricacies associated with it, but that's the basic premise....tax internet companies to help local and other businesses.
Here's an exerpt from Inslee's letter to our Congressional delegation, both Democrat and GOP:
"The competitive disparity between large online retailers and “brick and mortar” main street shops continues to grow, and this disparity hurts local businesses, the state economy, and the ability of state and local governments to provide services for our people.
In 1992, the U.S. Supreme Court held that sellers must have a physical presence in a state before that state could require collection of its sales and use taxes. In the subsequent 22 years, the national economy has transformed dramatically. We have seen the rise of the Internet, the explosion of electronic commerce, and we are now witnessing the birth of the “Internet of everything.” The physical presence standard established by the Court has become outdated."
We immediately thought of Black Friday. Each year, internet sales creep up anywhere from 3-5% as more shoppers buy products online. Experts predict by the end of the decade, Black Friday internet sales could exceed 50-60 percent of holiday purchases that weekend. It's part of the changing of the local, state, national and world economy. As Curt Cartier on our sister station 97Rock said "the genie's already out of the bottle" when it comes to trying to figure out a sensible, fair internet tax structure, and we agree.
It appears to us, from the wording contained in the letter, it's a thinly disguised attempt to allow the government to levy taxes on internet sales. We can already see legislators getting frothy at the mouth and bouncing their knee at even the possibility of billions of tax dollars to be gained, so they can blow them on more useless projects.
If you notice, it's a TAX they are proposing. There's nothing in there about taking this money and giving it to the brick-and-mortar businesses. Of course, that would be redistribution of wealth, which most of us have a problem with.