Lawmakers consider implementing taxes on online sales
By: The Associated Press
PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — Rhode Island lawmakers are considering legislation to force online retailers to collect sales taxes and remit them to the state.
The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Brian Kennedy, a Hopkinton Democrat, says Rhode Island loses more than $30 million a year because it can’t tax out-of-state retailers.
The House Finance Committee held a hearing on the bill last week.
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled in 1992 that states can’t impose sales taxes on businesses unless they have a physical presence in the state.
South Dakota recently enacted a law and filed a lawsuit against several remote retailers that aims to overturn the 1992 ruling.
Republican Rep. Daniel Reilly, of Portsmouth, says he doesn’t want Rhode Island to pass a state law just to prod the courts or the U.S. Congress to act.
© The Associated Press WLNE-TV 2016