News Release: Legislative Testimony for Jan. 31
NEWS RELEASE from the Platte Institute
Contact: Adam Weinberg
Phone: (402) 452-3737
Legislative Testimony for January 31: LB18, LB284 &LB291
Bills Enable Collections of Online Sales Tax, Comply with Wayfair Decision
LINCOLN, NE – The Platte Institute will testify in support of three bills that aim to codify Nebraska’s collections of sales tax on online transactions conducted by out-of-state retailers. Legislative Bills 18, 284, and 291 will be heard before the Legislature’s Revenue Committee today in State Capitol Room 1524. The hearing begins at 1:30 p.m. and the three bills currently lead the agenda.
Last year, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in South Dakota v. Wayfair that retailers did not need a physical presence in a state for states to collect sales tax on purchases made in their jurisdiction. This decision overturned a previous ruling from the 1990s that applied to catalog-based retailers.
The court provided a checklist of factors that the South Dakota law adheres to that made the law constitutional. Since Nebraska is a member of the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement, an agreement between states on the implementation of sales tax policy, the state already meets most of the court’s criteria for online sales tax collections.
Two provisions that are not expressly mentioned in Nebraska’s statutes, however, are the transaction threshold at which sellers would be expected to remit sales tax, and protection of sellers from retroactive collections of sales tax due prior to the Wayfair ruling.
The Nebraska Department of Revenue has previously issued a memo on these provisions, but Platte Institute Policy Director Sarah Curry says it’s necessary to place these elements into state law.
“The Nebraska Department of Revenue has already issued a statement that they interpret the current statute to apply to all remote sellers who meet a threshold of $100,000 or more than 200 transactions annually. This has been effective since January 1st of this year,” said Curry.
“However, because we do not have these two missing provisions in state statute, only voluntary collections have begun. This legislation is needed for the state to legally require remote sellers to remit their sales tax,” said Curry.
Curry’s testimony is posted online at PlatteInstitute.org/Testimony.
To schedule an interview on this topic, please contact Adam Weinberg at (402) 452-3737 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
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