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WRA Leads Effort to Level Playing Field for Main Street Retailers

 

 

 

Advocates, retailers and legislators with Governor Mead at the signing of HB 19- Sales From Remote Sellers


L-R Bob Jensen, Patrick Collins, Barbara Stafford, Chris Brown, Representative Mark Kinner, Representative Jerry Obermueller. Front- Governor Matt Mead.

 

 

From the very beginning of online commerce, local retailers serving as the backbone of our Wyoming Main Streets have been unfairly punished with a tax code that gives their online competitors a federal, government-sponsored advantage. Every day the stores in our communities are required to collect the state’s sales tax, while out-of-state competitors selling in Wyoming get a free pass. This results in an automatic price advantage putting local job creators at a competitive disadvantage.

Through Senator Enzi’s leadership, Wyoming has played a lead role in seeking a federal solution to the uneven playing field that Main Street Retailers across the country operate within every day. Congress has still not acted despite 15 years of the States’ good faith efforts. The WRA along with state trade associations and numerous retailers across the country have taken every step we can to facilitate collection, including advocating for a federal solution.

Years ago Wyoming adopted the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement. Remote sellers do not comply with the law today because they want to gain an advantage over our main street retailers, not because they cannot comply.

Last month, your association was successful leading efforts that resulted in the passage of HB 19-Sales From Remote Sellers. The bill requires all online vendors selling into Wyoming with more than $100,000 in annual sales or more than 200 individual transactions annually to collect and remit all applicable taxes. The Wyoming State Chamber of Commerce, the Wyoming Association of Municipalities, the Wyoming Taxpayers Association and the Wyoming County Commissioners Association joined the WRA in supporting the bill.

Last year South Dakota passed similar legislation and the WRA is proud to join in with theirs and several other state’s efforts to level the playing field for Main Street Retailers once and for all across the country. HB-19 goes into effect on July 1, 2017. Please continue to watch the monthly WRA e-newsletter for updates related to online sales tax collection. The Wyoming Retail Association would like to thank members Patrick Collins, owner of the Bicycle Station in Cheyenne and Rob Monroe, owner of Nate’s Flowers in Casper for their testimony and help in ensuring the passage of this critical piece of legislation.

 

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Wyoming Retail Association (WRA)
P.O. Box 1003, Cheyenne, WY 82003  Phone: (307) 634-8816, Fax (307) 632-0249