The U-S Supreme Court is hearing arguments today on whether businesses should have to collect sales tax for online purchases. Phil Kronebusch, political science professor at the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University, says large retailers support the move. “Target and Best Buy are two Minnesota examples…,” he says, “because they have to collect sales tax because they have stores throughout the country.” Kronebusch says Amazon used to oppose the idea, but now as they add more warehouses like the one in Shakopee they support it.
Currently a business does not have to collect sales tax if it’s shipping a product to a state where it doesn’t have an office, warehouse or other facility. Kronebusch says if the high court rules businesses must charge sales tax, it could get complicated because 48 states each have their own tax, plus many cities including St. Cloud also charge an additional half-cent sales tax.