NASHVILLE - U.S. Sen. Dick Durbin today praised a deal struck by Amazon with California over Internet sales tax collections but said his national legislation and not a state-by-state struggle remains the best solution.
"It's needed because I don't think any company including Amazon should have to fight this war on 50 fronts," said Durbin, D-Ill. "Beyond each state, they [Internet retailers] have to worry about local sales taxes that may be imposed as well."
Last week, Amazon and California lawmakers reached an agreement that the company would begin collecting sales taxes after a year.
In Tennessee, Gov. Bill Haslam is trying to persuade Amazon to change its current agreement with the state. Under a deal struck by prior Gov. Phil Bredesen, Amazon is locating two distribution centers in Southeast Tennessee in exchange for the company not having to collect sales taxes on items sold to Tennesseans.
Durbin was in Nashville where he held a news conference with U.S. Rep. Jim Cooper, D-Tenn., about Durbin's Main Street Fairness Act on the Internet sales tax issue, as well as new laws passed by Tennessee and other states that require government-issued photo identification to vote.
Durbin said his Main Street Fairness Act is an effort "to establish a national standard. And I think that's why Amazon has signed on. They want to have a consistent rule, state by state, that they can apply."
For complete details, see tomorrow's Times Free Press.