The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Business

January 2, 2013

Missouri loses $468M in online sales tax

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Missouri loses about $468 million per year in uncollected sales tax on purchases made over the Internet, according to researchers at the University of Missouri Truman School of Public Affairs.

The state misses the money in part because it hasn’t signed onto a 1999 agreement to simplify and encourage voluntary collection of sales taxes by e-commerce retailers, The Kansas City Star reported. Only about half of the states have signed the agreement.

The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that states cannot levy sales and use taxes on businesses that don’t have a store, office or other physical location in the state. Missouri consumers are technically required to pay taxes on purchases from outside the state, but almost none comply.

To remedy that situation, the National Governors Association and the National Conference of State Legislatures created the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax, which is meant to simplify sales tax collection across jurisdictions that have varying tax rates. The governing body for the Streamlined Sales agreement says about 1,400 retailers voluntarily collect sales taxes under the agreement.

Participating in the program would provide a short-term solution, increasing revenue for Missouri, University of Missouri researchers said in its report. The better, longer-term solution, the report suggested, is for Missouri legislators to lobby Congress to pass federal legislation.

A Marketplace Fairness Act, introduced in Congress and co-sponsored by Sen. Roy Blunt, a Missouri Republican, and Sen. Richard Durbin, an Illinois Democrat, would give states additional power to collect sales tax on e-commerce.

“The act would bring equity to sellers and consumers in the sense that it would be harder for individuals to evade paying sales and use taxes,” the MU report said.

The report said the act also would “level the playing field” for Missouri-based sellers forced to compete with online vendors from outside the state.

 

1
Text Only
Business
Poll

Given that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that electronic devices and communications are protected from searches and seizure without a warrant, do you think Missouri needs Amendment 9 added to its constitution?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Facebook
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
NDN Video
Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating