They’re getting there. Working as hard as they can. Don’t worry. If you order stuff over the Internet, they’ll get to you eventually. Or so they hope.
Today you can still buy stuff from out of state through the Internet without paying the sales tax that people in that other state have to pay. But the states want to fix that. Taxing people outside their state is good, they think. So officials from some thirty states got together recently to talk about a way to make it easier to collect sales taxes online. They call it the Streamlined Sales Tax Project.
Streamline getting the tax from you, and getting the data about you from the vendors. Once that’s done, they can load the bazooka, take aim, and fire. Part of the plan is to bribe vendors with part of the tax take so that they’re happier about socking you with the tax.
Critics say that larger vendors, with outlets in may of the states, would make more money off this bribe than smaller vendors. Big companies would also have an easier time handling all the complexities involved. Grover Norquist, president of the Americans for Tax Reform, worries about privacy. He says, “Whether I’m buying prescription drugs or sex toys online, someone is going to have to keep track of what I bought so they can figure out how to tax it. How do you do this without massive violations of privacy?”
Oh, it’s a complicated project. Lot of variables. But they’re working as hard as they can. Don’t worry they’ll get to you.
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.