Valdosta Daily Times

State News

February 16, 2013

Amazon faces deadline in tax dispute with state

ATLANTA — Online retailer Amazon faces a Wednesday deadline in an ongoing dispute with the state — and many of its traditional retailers — over sales taxes paid by Amazon shoppers in Georgia.

Amazon.com is not collecting sales tax from Georgia shoppers despite a new state law designed to snag the money from the world’s biggest online retailer, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported last month.

The new law went into effect at the start of 2013.

A key date in the dispute is Wednesday, when taxes collected for the month of January are supposed to be due to the state, said Rick McAllister, president of the Georgia Retail Association.

“Our members expect people to follow to the law,” McAllister said Friday.

Georgians who use Amazon.com eventually will have to pay taxes on their purchases, a spokesman for Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal said. However, it’s not clear when that will happen.

Deal’s spokesman Brian Robinson says Georgia has the authority to collect the tax and “we’re negotiating from this position.” Robinson said he expects more details to be released in coming weeks, he told the Journal-Constitution.

Seattle-based Amazon has fought against charging its customers a sales tax elsewhere, leading to legal battles in some states.

“If you look at states all across America where Amazon is not collecting, those taxes are not being paid by anybody,” McAllister said.

Amazon did not immediately respond to a message Friday morning from The Associated Press.

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