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[July 17, 2014]
Shaheen, Cruz, Ayotte Rally Bipartisan Opposition to Internet Sales Tax Legislation
(Targeted News Service Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) WASHINGTON, July 16 -- The office of Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, D-N.H., issued the following news release: U.S. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Ted Cruz (R-TX) and Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) are leading a bipartisan coalition urging Senate Leadership to swiftly extend the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) without the "extraneous efforts to impose new taxes on Internet sales," specifically the "Marketplace Fairness Act." The Marketplace Fairness Act, if enacted, would result in states attempting to collect sales taxes from businesses across state lines for sales made on the Internet.
The bipartisan letter, signed by Shaheen, Cruz, Ayotte and Senators Jon Tester (D-MT), Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Rand Paul (R-KY), to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell specifically calls for an extension of the ITFA, which prevents new taxes on Internet access, but without the so-called "Marketplace Fairness Act" attached to the extension. The Marketplace Fairness Act could hurt small businesses and job growth by mandating excessive, burdensome sales tax collection practices, particularly in states without sales taxes. The ITFA, which was originally enacted in 1998 and has been extended three times with broad support, is set to expire this November.
"For years, the Internet Tax Freedom Act has kept the Internet free of new taxes and has helped the Internet flourish into the driver of economic growth and job creation that it is today," the Senators wrote. "The ban on new Internet taxes has benefitted millions of Americans, including consumers, entrepreneurs and innovators." The letter continued, "Any attempt to incorporate Internet sales tax legislation to an extension of ITFA will hinder its passage, putting the current tax-free Internet environment in jeopardy." The full text of the bipartisan letter is below: July 16, 2014 The Honorable Harry Reid Majority Leader United States Senate Washington, DC 20510 The Honorable Mitch McConnell Republican Leader United States Senate Washington, DC 20510 Dear Majority Leader Reid and Republican Leader McConnell: For years, the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) has kept the Internet free of new taxes and has helped the Internet flourish into the driver of economic growth and job creation that it is today. The ban on new Internet taxes has benefitted millions of Americans, including consumers, entrepreneurs and innovators. As you know, unless Congress acts, ITFA is set to expire in November, putting at risk the vibrant landscape of the Internet that has become essential to our economy and everyday lives. We write today to urge you to extend ITFA as soon as possible, and to keep this legislation free of extraneous efforts to impose new taxes on Internet sales.
ITFA's ban on Internet access taxes and on multiple and discriminatory taxes is a common-sense policy with broad, bipartisan backing. ITFA was originally enacted in 1998 to respond to efforts by state and local jurisdictions to impose new and multiple taxes on the Internet. Since then, the Internet has revolutionized the economy and become a key part of commercial and educational opportunities for millions of Americans. That's why ITFA has been extended three times with broad support. To keep the Internet free of taxation, Congress must act again - and soon.
Unfortunately, advocates of another, unrelated bill that would actually increase taxation over the Internet have been pushing to include the measure as part of ITFA's extension. The so-called "Marketplace Fairness Act" would allow Internet sales taxes to be levied across state lines, thereby creating a new avenue for taxing sales over the Internet. This legislation would hurt small online retailers that have been able to grow and create jobs by reaching new markets across the country. Instead of protecting and fostering e-commerce, which ITFA has been doing for years, this Internet sales tax legislation would stifle small business growth and job creation - running counter to ITFA's goals and track record.
We strongly urge you to bring ITFA to the floor as soon as possible without this unnecessary measure. Any attempt to incorporate Internet sales tax legislation to an extension of ITFA will hinder its passage, putting the current tax-free Internet environment in jeopardy. Already, businesses are starting to plan for the months ahead, and failure to pass ITFA in a timely fashion raises the specter of tax increases that consumers and businesses can't afford. Therefore, we believe that the Senate should take up and pass an extension of ITFA - which has enjoyed the long-standing leadership of Senate Finance Committee Chair Ron Wyden - to move legislation to extend ITFA as soon as possible without measures to allow Internet sales taxes to stifle e-commerce.
Thank you for your consideration.
Sincerely, Jeanne Shaheen United States Senator Ted Cruz United States Senator Kelly Ayotte United States Senator Jon Tester United States Senator Jeff Merkley United States Senator Rand Paul United States Senator TNS30VitinMar-140717-4799291 30VitinMar (c) 2014 Targeted News Service
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