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Introduced Version House Concurrent Resolution 67 History

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hcr67 intr
HOUSE CONCURRENT RESOLUTION NO. 67

(By Mr. Speaker, Mr. Thompson, and Delegates Doyle,

Campbell, Reynolds, Anderson, Evans, Iaquinta,
Guthrie, Manchin, Klempa and White)


Urging the Members of the West Virginia congressional delegation to sponsor and support the Main Street Fairness Act and President Obama to sign it into law.

Whereas, The 1967 Bellas Hess and the 1992 Quill Supreme Court decisions denied states the authority to require the collection of sales and use taxes by out-of-state sellers that have no physical presence in the taxing state; and
Whereas, The combined weight of the inability to collect sales and use taxes on remote sales through traditional carriers and the tax erosion due to electronic commerce threatens the future viability of the sales tax as a stable revenue source for state and local governments; and
Whereas, The Center for Business and Economic Research at the University of Tennessee has estimated that states lost as much as $15 billion in 2008 because they were not able to collect taxes on remote sales, including sales on the Internet; and
Whereas, The same study, estimated that West Virginia lost as much as $50 million in 2008 because of this inability to require remote sellers to collect our state's sales and use taxes; and
Whereas, Since 1999, state legislators, governors, local elected officials, state tax administrators and representatives of the private sector have worked to develop a Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Collection System for the 21st Century; and
Whereas, Between 2001 and 2004, West Virginia and thirty-nine other states enacted legislation expressing the intent of the state to simplify the state's sales and use tax collection systems and to participate in multistate discussions to finalize and ratify an interstate agreement to streamline collection of the states' sales and use taxes; and
Whereas, On November 12, 2002, state delegates unanimously ratified the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement, which substantially simplifies state and local sales tax systems, removes the burdens to interstate commerce that were of concern to the Supreme Court, and protects state sovereignty; and
Whereas, The Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement provides the states with a blueprint to create a simplified and more uniform sales and use tax collection system that when implemented, allows justification for Congress to overturn the Bellas Hess and Quill decisions; and
Whereas, West Virginia enacted legislation in 2003 to bring this state's sales and use tax statutes into compliance with the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement; and
Whereas, By March 1, 2009, twenty-three states, Arkansas, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Michigan, Minnesota, Nevada, Nebraska, North Carolina, North Dakota, Ohio, Oklahoma, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin and Wyoming, representing over forty percent of the total population of the United States, enacted legislation to bring their state's sales and use tax statutes into compliance with the Agreement; and
Whereas, The West Virginia Legislature and our colleagues in the other states have shown the resolve to acknowledge the complexities of the current sales and use tax collection system, have worked with the business community to formulate a truly simplified and streamlined collection system and have shown the political will to enact the necessary changes to make the streamlined collection system the law; and
Whereas, The Main Street Fairness Act will be introduced in the 111th Congress to grant those states that comply with the Agreement the authority to require all sellers, regardless of nexus, to collect those states' sales and use taxes; and
Whereas, Supporting the states effort to comply with the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement and the federal legislation granting states collection authority are such companies, unions and organizations as: Alabama Retail Association; American Booksellers Association; Arizona Retailers Association; Arkansas Grocers and Retail Merchants Association; Best Buy, Inc; California Retailers Association; Colorado Retail Council; Connecticut Retail Merchants Association; Council on State Governments (CSG); Council of State Retail Associations (CSRA); Council on State Taxation (COST); Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc.; CTIA-The Wireless Association; Federation of Tax Administrators (FTA); First Washington Reality, Inc.; Florida Retail Federation; General Growth Properties, Inc.; Georgia Retail Association; Retail Merchants Association of Hawaii; Home Depot; Idaho Retailers Association; Illinois Retail Merchants Association; Independent Music Retailers Association; Indiana Retail Council; International Council of Shopping Centers (ICSC); International Union of Police; Iowa Retail Federation; J.C. Penney Corporation, Inc.; Jack in the Box, Inc.; Jewelers of America; Kansas Retail Council; Kentucky Retail Association; Kimco Realty Corporation; K-Mart Corporation; Land's End; Louisiana Retailers Association; Maine Merchants Association; Maryland Retailers Association; Retailers Association of Massachusetts (RAM); Michigan Retailers Association; Minnesota Retailers Association; Retail Association of Mississippi; Missouri Retailers Association; National Association of Chain Drug Stores; National Association of College Stores; National Association of Industrial and Office Properties (NAIOP); National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT); National Bicycles Dealers Association; National Conference of State Legislatures (NCSL); National Education Association (NEA); National Governors Association (NGA); National Office Products Association; National Retail Federation (NRF); Nebraska Retail Federation; Retail Federation of Nevada; New England Independent Booksellers Association; New Jersey Retail Merchants Association; New Mexico Retail Association; Retail Council of New York State; Newspaper Association of America; North American Retail Dealers Association (NARDA); North Carolina Retail Merchants Association; North Dakota Retail Association; Northern California Independent Booksellers; Ohio Council of Retail Merchants; Oklahoma Retail Council; Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association; Pennsylvania Retailers' Association; Performance Automotive Retailers; Performance Warehouse Association; PETsMART, Inc.; Radio Shack Corporation; Real Estate Roundtable; Retail Leaders Association (RILA); Rhode Island Retail Federation; Ross Stores, Inc.; Sears Holdings Corporation; Simon Property Group, Inc.; South Carolina Retail Association; South Dakota Retailers Association; Staples, Inc.; Target; Tennessee Retailers Association; The Gap, Inc.; The Macerich Company; The TJX Companies, Inc; US Telecom; Utah Retail Merchants Association; Vermont Retail Association; Virginia Retail Merchants Association; Wal-Mart; Washington Retail Association; Weingarten Realty Investors; West Acres Development LLP; Westfield; Wisconsin Merchants Federation; and Wyoming Retail Merchants Association; and
Whereas, Until Congress and the President enact the Main Street Fairness Act, participation by remote sellers is only voluntary and thus states are unlikely to close the revenue gap between what is owed on remote transactions and what is collected; and
Whereas, Congressman Roy Blunt of Missouri has termed this federal legislation as "fiscal relief for the states that does not cost the federal government a single cent" and ensures the viability of the sales and use tax as a state revenue source; therefore, be it
Resolved by the Legislature of West Virginia:
That the members of our congressional delegation join as cosponsors of the Main Street Fairness Act, by Senator Michael Enzi of Wyoming and Congressman William Delahunt of Massachusetts, and support its swift adoption by the Congress of the United States; and, be it
Further Resolved, That President Barack Obama, upon its passage by the Congress is urged to sign the Main Street Fairness Act into law; and, be it
Further Resolved, That the Clerk of the House of Delegates forward a certified copy of this resolution to the President of the United States and the members of West Virginia's congressional delegation.
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