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Brown signs bill that requires online retailers to pay state sales taxes

Original post made on Sep 23, 2011

Approving a landmark legislative compromise that creates jobs and ensures that online retailers do not receive an unfair tax advantage over brick-and-mortar businesses, Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. Friday signed a bill that requires Amazon and other internet retailers to collect sales taxes starting next year.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, September 23, 2011, 12:09 PM

Comments (9)

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Posted by Philip
a resident of Pleasanton Heights
on Sep 23, 2011 at 10:50 pm

Good news. Soon online retailers will loose the edge they had over physical book store. How will the online retailers keep their winning ways.

What will be their next move?

Web Link

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Posted by Parent of Two
a resident of Val Vista
on Sep 27, 2011 at 4:00 pm

Parent of Two is a registered user.

Remarkable how short-sighted and dense our governor is. Does he really think that making the consumers pay 9% more for online sales will BRING BACK the retailers that have already died or that it will somehow spur the economy?

The only time you should impose a TAX on a purchase is if you're trying to discourage its usage (i.e. alcohol, tobacco, etc.). So what is Moonbeam trying to discourage now... reading?

Amazon (and other online retailers) won based on selection, convenience, and pricing. Maybe local businesses could compete cost-wise if we'd lower the minimum wage... This is merely another way to try and increase state coffers to pay for failed social programs.

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Posted by Mike
a resident of Highland Oaks
on Sep 27, 2011 at 4:08 pm

Parent of Two,

"selection, convenience, and pricing"

Spot on.


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Posted by Patriot
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 27, 2011 at 9:35 pm

I must be missing something. Are you guys saying there shouldn't be sales taxes for anyone (except "i.e. alcohol, tobacco, etc."). Don't the same arguments apply to income and property taxes? Why should Barnes and Noble and Best Buy have to charge sales tax but Amazon not? I don't get the point here.

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Posted by lazzboy
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 27, 2011 at 10:37 pm

Partiot - I'd have to agree. While I enjoy the 10% discount of paying online, it hardly seems fair to give a company out of state a competitive advantage over those that exist in state and employee state workers.

The person mentions that Amazon wins in pricing - that is fairly easy when you have an immediate 10% lower rate than an in-state competition.

So let everyone compete on an even playing field. Amazon will be ok and maybe more people will buy local.

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Posted by steve
a resident of Parkside
on Sep 28, 2011 at 9:27 am

Since Amazon still has more purchasing power than smaller establishments, they can still undercut prices and provide more selection compared to other retailers. Size matters.

Additionally, if they continue to ship most items for free, they win the convenience factor as well.

Watch for a run on sales at Amazon prior to the Sept 2012 tax imposition. Short term, it'll be a big win for Amazon and consumers. Longer term, Amazon will still retain a large market share for the reasons stated above, despite the govts attempts at imposing 'fairness' to change a law they instituted in the first place.

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Posted by Robin
a resident of Foothill High School
on Sep 28, 2011 at 9:46 am

To "Parent of Two". It seems to me that you are the one who is "short-sighted and dense". How is bringing revenue to this state bad?

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Posted by Patriot
a resident of Another Pleasanton neighborhood
on Sep 28, 2011 at 9:48 am

"despite the govts attempts at imposing 'fairness' to change a law they instituted in the first place."

Seems to me like the government screwed up in the first place by giving them the unfair advantage. Fixing that seems like the right thing to do. I don't get why Walmart or Target has to charge sales tax but Amazon doesn't.

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Posted by Stacey
a resident of Amberwood/Wood Meadows
on Sep 28, 2011 at 10:54 am

Stacey is a registered user.

As you drive downtown, you don't see an Amazon sign anywhere in sight. You can't pop into the Amazon store next door when you make a grocery run on your way to pick up your kid from school. The idea of unfair advantages that online retailers have over brick and mortar stores is a mixed bag.

I haven't looked at the bill. I assume it is only for collecting sales tax on sales made by California affiliates of Amazon. Otherwise, how do they get around the nexus problem?

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