VRMA Hails End to Amazon Sales Tax Loophole

(Richmond, Virginia)Virginia Retail Merchants Association (VRMA) is hailing the end of a loophole that gave online giant Amazon.com an unfair competitive advantage in the commonwealth.

Governor Bob McDonnell today announced that Virginia and Amazon have reached an agreement that will require Amazon to begin collecting sales taxes.  State law requires that online retailers with a physical presence in the commonwealth collect sales tax on purchases from individuals with a Virginia address, but Amazon has been using a loophole to avoid those taxes.  Amazon has a warehouse in Sterling and is planning to build two distribution centers south of Richmond.

As part of the agreement, Amazon will begin collecting sales taxes on purchases made by Virginians in September of 2013.  A bill introduced by Senator Frank Wagner (SB 597) has been modified to reflect the agreement, and was passed by the House of Delegates Finance Committee today.  It still must be ratified by the Senate and House, and then will go to the governor to be signed.

“We appreciate the efforts by Governor McDonnell and Senator Wagner to bring about sales tax fairness, and we congratulate the governor on the success of his negotiations with Amazon,” said VRMA President Laurie Aldrich.  “Retailers understand that there will always be competition in the marketplace.  This agreement allows them to compete on an even playing field.”

For more information on the e-fairness issue in Virginia, please visit http://standwithmainstreet.com/virginia.

About VRMA
The Virginia Retail Merchants Association (VRMA), established in 1905, is a not-for-profit trade association representing retailers to educate, inform, and serve as a resource. VRMA and its retail member associations represent more than 5,400 retailers and other associated businesses throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia.  For more information, please visit www.virginiaretail.org.

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