House Republicans issue online sales tax principles, receive support

|By:, SA News Editor

Among the principles the Republican-led House Judiciary Committee thinks should guide the creation of a national online sales tax law: Internet companies shouldn't face "new or discriminatory taxes not faced in the offline world;" online and offline retailers should be "on equal footing;" laws should be simple and compliance costs low; businesses should have the right to protest unfair treatment, and state governments "should be encouraged to compete with one another to keep tax rates low ."

EBAY, which hosts many merchants collecting little or no sales tax and has opposed national sales tax law efforts, says it's "very encouraged" by the principles. A trade group pushing for a national law calls the principles a "great first step."

Though the Senate signed off on an online sales tax bill in May, the bill has been mired in the House since then.

Amazon (AMZN), which collects tax from a large and growing portion of U.S. customers, has backed the bill. Other e-commerce-related names that stand to be directly or indirectly affected by the passage of a law: OSTK, NILE, ECOM, SALE.