Today at a briefing on Capitol Hill, a panel spoke about the upcoming hearing on internet sales tax and the opposition of the Marketplace Fairness Act. The panel consisted of Phil Bond, Executive Director of WE R HERE, Andrew Moylan from R Street, and The Attorney General of Montana Tim Fox.
Tim Fox began the briefing discussing the importance of opposing the MFA in terms of what it would mean for small businesses. He included that the massive amounts of paper work, increased labor, and accounting costs would force most small businesses to shut down.
Andrew Moylan spent most of his time discussing the polling that Gallup has conducted in regards to how public views MFA legislation. It seems as though the overwhelming amount of consumers oppose any kind of internet sales tax. Andrew will be testifying at the hearing on March 4th.
Phil Bond finished up the briefing by answering what the proponents of the MFA have had to say. He mentioned how many of the MFA supporters suggest the simple solution to the problem of having to handle so many different tax codes by providing a software to handle it. His response was it was not simply that easy. He then went on to cite a study by Pricewaterhouse Coopers that said that the MFA would cost businesses 17 cents for every dollar being taxed and with the proposed software it would only be reduced to 15 cents for every dollar taxed. He concluded by saying that a solution to this problem that MFA seeks to fix (yet fails) would be to set an origin sales tax. A tax based on origin would be simple as far as taxes are concerned and would encourage competition among states.