Florida representative Michelle Rehwinkel Vasilinda has introduced HB 455, legislation to conform to the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement (SSUTA). The legislation would take effect on January 1, 2012. This is great news for the Streamlined effort, Florida being one of the larger states.
If passed, Florida’s action on Streamlined will help the state recover an estimated $1.5 billion in uncollected sales tax in 2012. More information on that estimate—and the estimated amounts of uncollected sales tax for other states—can be found at the National Conference of State Legislators (NCSL) website.
So, a summary of all of the activity related to collecting the sales tax due on internet purchases:
States that have introduced new Streamlined legislation this year: Alabama, Connecticut, Idaho, Missouri, and Florida
States that have introduced affiliate nexus legislation this year: Illinois, California, Connecticut, New Mexico, and Mississippi
Twenty-four states are already members of SSUTA. Six more states have SSUTA legislation under consideration. Five more (I’m not double-counting Connecticut) are considering legislation to take a different approach to collecting tax on internet sales.
Three more states are meeting resistance to their existing efforts to collect taxes using a non-Streamlined approach (New York is in litigation with Amazon and Overstock over its affiliate law; North Carolina lost a judicial decision over receiving detailed purchase information from Amazon; and Colorado was recently prevented from enforcing its notification and reporting laws while a lawsuit by Amazon and Overstock moves forward).
Seems like we have reached a tipping point—enough states are jumping into the fray to make instituting Streamlined the most sensible solution to the problem of uncollected sales tax.