Amazon Drops North Carolina SMBs Over Sales Tax Proposal - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

IoT
IoT
Government // Open Government

Amazon Drops North Carolina SMBs Over Sales Tax Proposal

Trying to make up for declining state revenue, North Carolina is preparing to collect taxes on online transactions.

Faced with the implementation of a new online state sales tax in North Carolina, Amazon.com has ended partnerships with scores of small business entrepreneurs in the state as the North Carolina legislature prepares to enact new policy on "click-through" transactions.

The online retail giant has been battling several states over sales taxes, generally maintaining they are unconstitutional. Noting that consumers are usually required to pay state taxes on online purchases, lawmakers in several states have taken action to collect the taxes with varying degrees of success. Some states, including New York, have been collecting taxes while others like Maryland, Minnesota, and Tennessee have rejected collecting sales taxes. Some additional states, including New Hampshire, don't collect sales taxes even on bricks-and-mortar retail store purchases.

In criticizing the pending North Carolina online tax, Amazon spokesperson Patty Smith said, "It's not a decision we take lightly. It's unfortunate that given the way the legislation is drafted, we have no choice."

Like most other states, North Carolina is suffering from a shortfall of tax revenue, as the economic meltdown continues to take its toll. The Democratic-controlled legislature has argued that in addition to providing new tax revenue, the measure would level the playing field for all retailers whether they are online entrepreneurs or bricks-and-mortar businesses.

"They (Amazon's associates) need to pay their taxes like everybody else," said Representative Pryor Gibson, a Democrat, according to media reports.

Senate Republican leader Phil Berger responded, "This is just the beginning of the job and small-business losses for North Carolina's economy. Seeing how many holes we can shoot in our foot is not an economic strategy North Carolinians can count on to reduce our record 11.1% unemployment rate."

Some Amazon affiliates have said they will likely leave the state if the taxation legislation goes into effect. On the other side of the issue, many North Carolina small store owners, including many book stores that compete with Amazon, have hailed the pending legislation.

Amazon has challenged a recent New York law that calls for Amazon associates to pay online taxes while it continues to fight proposed legislation in California, maintaining it will end its relationships with its associates in that state.


InformationWeek Analytics has published an analysis of the current state of service assurance. Download the report here (registration required).

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
Slideshows
Strategies You Need to Make Digital Transformation Work
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  11/25/2019
Commentary
Enterprise Guide to Data Privacy
Cathleen Gagne, Managing Editor, InformationWeek,  11/22/2019
News
Watch Out: 7 Digital Disruptions for IT Leaders
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  11/18/2019
White Papers
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Video
Current Issue
Getting Started With Emerging Technologies
Looking to help your enterprise IT team ease the stress of putting new/emerging technologies such as AI, machine learning and IoT to work for their organizations? There are a few ways to get off on the right foot. In this report we share some expert advice on how to approach some of these seemingly daunting tech challenges.
Slideshows
Flash Poll