Santa Fe New Mexican
by Joseph Ditzler
June 22, 2018
New Mexico officials are studying how to take advantage of this week’s U.S. Supreme Court ruling allowing states to tax internet sales, a potential windfall for state government that also would please local brick-and-mortar retailers while forcing consumers to bear the brunt.
The high court ruled that states may require internet retailers to collect a sales tax on transactions even if the retailers have no physical presence in those states. Although New Mexico collects a voluntary tax from online giant Amazon, most internet retailers don’t have to pay the state’s gross receipts tax on goods shipped to customers here.
“Clearly, online retailers have been competitors for some Santa Fe businesses,” said Simon Brackley, president and CEO of the Santa Fe Chamber of Commerce. “Art, jewelry, clothing, furnishings and things like ristras and typical Santa Fe items are being sold online by other companies, and this has been challenging for local retailers.”
But that could end as states take advantage of the ruling and require online retailers to collect taxes and distribute the proceeds to those states.
Kevin Kelley, spokesman for the New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Department, said the path toward actually imposing a tax is not yet clear.