Supreme Court Agrees To Hear Texas's Appeal Of Racial Gerrymandering Challenges

J. Scott Applewhite

The high court's decision in South Dakota v. Wayfair could overturn a 26-year-old legal precedent and dramatically shift the impact e-commerce plays in states such as South Dakota where no income tax is collected and much of state revenue is generated through a sales and use tax.

In 1992, the issue came up again, but the Court ruled in the case of Quill Corp. v.

In addition to the case before the Supreme Court, NRF is continuing to support the Remote Transactions Parity Act, which would allow states to require out-of-state sellers to collect sales tax.

South Dakota's law was passed partly in response to a concurring opinion written by Justice Anthony Kennedy in a unanimous 2015 Supreme Court ruling that allowed a challenge to a Colorado law encouraging retailers to collect the taxes to go forward.

Similar legislation was introduced a year ago with bipartisan support, but the effort has stalled in Congress because House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob GoodlatteRobert (Bob) William GoodlatteRosenstein to testify before House Judiciary Committee next week Conservative pressure on Sessions grows Clock ticking down on NSA surveillance powers MORE (R-Va.) has wanted to take a different approach on the issue. "Unfortunately, antiquated sales tax collection rules have resulted in an uneven playing field that's making it harder for Main Street retailers to compete in today's digital economy", said Matthew Shay, president of the National Retail Federation trade group.

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Texas' primary argument is that its 2013 maps are shielded from review because they were drawn by a court - even if they were drawn under rushed circumstances, and even if they did, in many respects, use the state-drawn 2011 maps as a template.

Sen. Heidi Heitkamp, D-N.D., who brought that case to the high court when she was North Dakota's tax commissioner, called the decision to hear the new case "welcome news for the small businesses that create jobs and are the lifeblood of our communities".

South Dakota is losing millions of dollars a year in uncollected sales taxes because of growing Internet sales.

That would be a victory for states and traditional businesses, but a defeat for smaller online retailers who claim they can not navigate dozens of state sales tax systems the way major players such as Amazon do. As such, many states can not collect sales taxes off of e-commerce behemoths like Amazon. "Although we would have preferred the Supreme Court to let the cases proceed below to a remedy, we are heartened by the decision of the Supreme Court to leave open the question of its jurisdiction", Perales said in a statement. "Moreover, the integration of tax collection software is extraordinarily expensive". Consumers who purchase from out-of-state retailers are generally supposed to pay the state taxes themselves, but few do.

The National Retail Federation, which represents both internet and brick-and-mortar sellers, said Friday it welcomed the Supreme Court's decision to take the case. Systemax agreed to collect the tax, while the other companies contested the state law. All but five states charge a sales tax.

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