Debate circles online sales tax

  • Article by: Jim Spencer , Star Tribune
  • Updated: April 26, 2013 - 10:54 PM

The Senate moved closer to passage, but the outlook is less clear in the House.

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yathinksoApr. 26, 13 7:54 PM

So big companies that usually lobby for lower taxes are lobbying for HIGHER taxes?? Oh yeah, that is right, since this tax only affects consumers, Best Buy and Target are all for it. Not surprising they want to cost the consumer MORE money when making purchases. Maybe they should lobby for a B2B tax as well.

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crowtrobotApr. 26, 13 8:05 PM

"Shoppers go to a neighborhood store, pick the brain of the sales staff about different products, then use that knowledge to buy online, sometimes on a smartphone without leaving the store, Franken said." Really, Al? Ever shopped in a Best Buy before? The sales staffs knowledge is the retailers weakest attribute. Online reviews are much more reliable.

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rnvhillApr. 26, 13 8:33 PM

If people followed the rules and paid the taxes owed on online purchases come April 15th then they would not be looking at forcing the issue. The beast does not like being cheated of its due.

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arspartzApr. 26, 13 9:00 PM

Businesses collect sales tax to help pay for the costs of the infrastructure needed to operate the business: streets, water, sewer, police... Why should a business that operates outside of the state collect money that only goes to help their competition? How is this bill not, in reality, a state to state tariff?

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richieApr. 26, 13 9:05 PM

We buy American we go to antique stores

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sunnyreaderApr. 26, 13 9:06 PM

MN companies give back to our community. Online retailers don't.

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mvorceApr. 26, 13 9:10 PM

The reason the larger companies want this tax is because it will limit their competition. The smaller mom and pop online stores already have a hard time competing. Yes they don't have the brick and mortar stores but this non existent tax levels the playing field for the smaller stores. The larger companies like Amazon, Target, Walmart, and Best Buy can easily hire more people or software designers to write code to collect this tax. The smaller shops will have an issue with that. Yes stores like Best Buy are losing market share but that's more from poor customer service and higher prices than their online competitors. The higher prices are from higher overhead costs not because they charge sales tax.

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logician88Apr. 26, 13 9:24 PM

Online sales are not exempt from tax now. If you purchase an item to which sales tax applies and it isn't charged, then you owe Use Tax. There is a $770 exemption for any 12-month period, but after that you owe use tax on the entire amount -- even the first $770. The most that this will raise anyone's real tax liability in Minnesota is about $55. If you don't pay it right now you are already a tax cheat.

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ganjed75Apr. 26, 13 9:35 PM

If I don't buy from a Minnesota retailer and the purchase is out-of-state, then I don't owe Minnesota anything. This law should be unconstitutional.

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davewtcApr. 26, 13 9:37 PM

People go to a store, decide what they want, then buy tax-free online. How long do you think stores will survive that way?!?

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