Vermont – VT Tax decision could bring in $8M

Rutland Herald | February 23, 2017

MONTPELIER — The state will take in another $8 million or so in annual revenue now that Amazon has agreed to collect and remit sales tax, but Vermont will continue to miss out on about $13 million from online purchases and mail orders, according to the Legislature’s Joint Fiscal Office.

Vermont’s sale tax must be collected from retailers who have a presence, or what is known as nexus, in the state. The state has tried without success in recent years to collect sales tax for online purchases from retailers who do not have a presence in Vermont.

Amazon, the nation’s largest online retailer, began voluntarily collecting Vermont’s 6 percent sales tax this month. But plenty of other online retailers continue to sell goods to Vermonters without collecting the tax. Residents are supposed to pay the sales and use tax due on online purchases when they file their annual income tax returns, but only about 10 percent of filers report any tax due.

Because Amazon is a specific taxpayer, the Tax Department is not allowed to provide information about its sales in Vermont or how much tax it may end up remitting to the state.

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