So the big announcement this week is that Amazon is moving its warehousing to Florida, a move that will create thousands of more jobs, further bolstering the states continued jobs growth.
Pretty cool. It is another feather in Governor Rick Scott’s economic development cap. It will improve Florida’s employment rate, and it may serve as a magnet for other businesses thinking of moving to the Sunshine State.
However, there’s another issue that this brings to the forefront of the discussion. Ever since the advent of online retail sales, out-of-state online retailers have had a built in advantage over Florida’s bricks and mortar locations. The reason why is because the on-line guys haven’t been required to collect sales tax. Those who purchase items on-line are “on their honor” to pay the tax. I doubt that anyone ever does.
The entire issue may be moot very soon. The Marketplace Fairness Act is working its way through Congress right now and may bring a national standard to the way that on-line sales are handled. It may require all Internet purchases be subject to state sales tax, and that would level the playing field for thousands of small retailers in Florida. Plus, we conservatives would argue that we should apply it equally and cut the rate for everyone.The twenty-year tax loophole could finally be closed. Maybe time to encourage our Congressmen to step up to the plate and get this done.
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