- Image by Maximum PC via Wikimedia Commons
For Indiana residents who thought buying items online was supposed to simplify the shopping experience, its time to think again. The murky issue of internet taxation is being discussed by state legislators due to concern that online shopping is creating a negative impact on local business.
A bipartisan duo of state lawmakers wants Congress to allow the states to collect sales taxes on Internet purchases, a move they say could bring hundreds of millions of dollars to cash-strapped Indiana and level the playing field for Hoosier retailers.
State Rep. Ed DeLaney, D-Indianapolis, was spurred into action after David Simon, CEO of mall developer Simon Property Group Inc., lamented that Internet retailers rarely charge their customers for sales tax, putting mom-and-pop stores and big-box retailers at a competitive disadvantage because they must add Indiana’s 7-percent sales tax to the customer’s bill. [...]
Opponents of stronger Internet taxation say doing so would be a major hindrance to electronic commerce just as it’s becoming an established industry. They say collecting taxes puts an additional burden on Internet retailers, many of which are small businesses. And, opponents say, tax-collection mandates could drive popular e-commerce sites to set up operations outside the United States.
Regardless of where you stand on the issue, it is likely that soon shipping and handling fees will not be the only additional change you receive when shopping online.