March 14, 2001, 12:00 AM

NRF wants multi-channel sales tax collection

National Retail Federation calls for leveling the sales tax playing field and support equality across distribution channels.

The National Retail Federation called for equitable sales tax collection requirements across all retail channels, and encouraged Congress to approve S. 512, the "Internet Tax Moratorium and Equity Act," introduced by Senator Byron Dorgan (D-ND).

"With Congress preparing to extend the current moratorium on access and bit taxes, it is vital for legislators to also address the inequities in state sales tax collection obligations," said Steve Pfister, NRF senior vice president for government relations. "We are encouraged by the efforts of Sens. Dorgan, McCain, Wyden, and others who are working to end this disparity." At issue is a loophole in current tax law that allows remote sellers without a physical presence in a state to avoid collecting and remitting a state`s sales tax, creating an unlevel playing field among retailers. This puts small, Main Street retailers at a significant disadvantage, providing a 6% to 8% price break on items purchased through a catalog or a website, NRF says.

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