DENVER (CBS4) – One of the benefits of shopping online is consumers often don’t have to pay sales taxes, but a couple of bills at the state House would change that.
CBS4’s news partners at the Denver Business Journal reported on the proposals this week and reporter Ed Sealover from the DBJ stopped by CBS4 studios to talk about them.
Colorado lawmakers passed an online sales tax in 2010 along with some other states, but a federal court threw it out last year.
“The courts ruled that they put an undue burden on the Internet retailers because they had to collect for each of the states in very different ways,” Sealover said.
What has changed this year is it’s become a national effort. The Federal Marketplace Fairness Act is expected to pass later this year.
“It would say these retailers would have to pay these taxes so long as these states have a simplified system and central collection point where they would pay them to,” Sealover said. “Even Amazon.com said, ‘We’re not going to get in the way of that if it’s simple and uniform across the states.’ “
There are three different proposed bills. Colorado House Speaker Mark Ferrandino’s bill would set up a centralized collection point that online retailers would have to go to. It would also set up a database with all of the city and county sales rates.
Rep. Angela Williams is backing a bill that would define who would have to pay the taxes.
“It basically says anybody who sells a product online for use and distribution in the state of Colorado,” Sealover said.
The third bill is backed by Reps. Kathleen Conti and Daniel Kagan. It would attempt to set up a statewide uniform tax system.
“That basically would mean that cities and counties don’t have to charge the same tax rate for each object, but they all have to tax the same objects.”
Backers of the idea say the online sales taxes would benefit brick and mortar stores.