ASHLAND, Ore. — United States senators voted to move forward with a bill that could require sales tax to be added to purchases made online.
Currently, there is no sales tax in Oregon, so any purchase made online anywhere in the country from businesses like Ashland-based Funagain Games includes simply the cost for the product and shipping, but that could soon change.
Monday, the United States Senate voted 74 to 20 to move forward with a bill dubbed the “Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013.” Supporters of the bill say it levels the playing field for “brick and mortar stores” and will also allow local governments to collect millions of dollars they have missed out on in the past.
In the past, sales tax would be added to an online purchase only if the business had a physical presence in that state and if the state collected sales tax.
Funagain Games General Manager Nick Medinger thinks they may lose some sales from out-of-state customers because the product will be the same price as a local shop. However, no impact is expected for Oregon customers.
Oregon Senator Ron Wyden has been a leader against the bill, calling it an, “unprecedented effort to apply local laws to the global medium that is the Internet.” A final vote by the senate is expected to occur by the end of the week.