California brick-and-mortar retailers are taking their battle against online retailers like Amazon-dot-com from Sacramento to Washington, DC. They’re working with members of Congress from both parties on a bill introduced Wednesday in the House.
Online giant Amazon has resisted collecting sales tax on out-of-state purchases for years. But last month, it agreed to a compromise with California lawmakers. Under the deal, Amazon and other online retailers will start collecting state sales tax late next year if there’s no federal solution.
The search for that federal solution is what brought small business owners like San Diego’s Anne Mery to Capitol Hill. “Amazon isn’t at the table with us, but I think they’re more receptive to it. So getting Amazon on board through the legislation in California is huge,” said Mery. “And we’re hoping that that’s going to happen across the country.”
The bipartisan House bill would let states collect online sales tax – and set their own rules on how to do it, within some national guidelines.