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Lawmakers Working to Tax Online Purchases

Lawmakers are taking another stab at closing what they call a tax loophole that allows online retailers to skip collecting sales tax, putting brick-and-mortar retailers at a disadvantage.

Reps. Steve Womack (R-Ark.) and Jackie Speier (D-Calif.) introduced the Marketplace Equity Act at a press conference today that they say will give states the authority to require out-of-state vendors to collect on legally-owed taxes. The bill includes an exemption for small and start-up online retailers.

The effort is in its early stages, but Katherine Lugar, the Retail Industry Leaders Association's executive vice president for public affairs, said there will be advertising and lobbying campaigns. There will also be grassroots outreach to help spread awareness about the bill.


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