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Oxford Wants State Leaders to Pass Internet Taxes Back to City

By Alyssa Schnugg
Staff writer
alyssa.schnugg@hottytoddy.com

The Oxford Board of Aldermen wants Oxford to get a piece of the internet sales tax pie should the Mississippi Legislature pass a bill requiring remote retailers to collect tax from their Mississippi customers.

On June 21, the United States Supreme Court overturned a decision that required businesses to have a physical presence in the state to be required to collect taxes. This opened the door for Mississippi’s Legislature to pass a law that levels the playing field by requiring remote vendors without a physical presence to collect taxes.
“Sales tax in Oxford increased anywhere from 5 to 9 percent every year for more than 10 years,” said Mayor Robyn Tannehill. “Last year, it increased 2 percent. I don’t think people are spending less. I think they’re buying more online.”
Tannehill pointed out that anytime someone pays for merchandise online—including the new Walmart and Kroger grocery curbside pick-up—they are not paying sales tax to Mississippi.
The 7 percent state sales taxes paid in Oxford go to Jackson, and then 18.5 percent of those taxes are returned to Oxford.
The resolution passed Tuesday by the board asks that should the Legislature meet in a special session in August and approve the bill, that 18.5 percent of taxes collected by online shoppers in Oxford returns to Oxford to use at the discretion of the local governments as they “see fit.”
There are already roughly 40 sites paying internet sales tax because they have a physical presence in the state. An additional 22, such as Amazon, voluntarily pay the tax.
Bills requiring the collection of internet sales were presented in 2017 and 2018 to the Mississippi Legislature, however, both failed to pass.
Columbus’s Mayor and City Council passed a similar resolution recently and more cities are rumored to be creating their own resolutions to submit to state leaders in Jackson.


 

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