Perry Vetoes Bill that Would Have Boosted Online Tax Collection

May 31, 2011

On Tuesday, Gov. Rick Perry vetoed legislation aimed at collecting more tax from online sales in Texas. The bill would have tightened rules on when online vendors must charge sales tax in the state. Under the proposed rules, retailers who maintain distribution centers in Texas would have had to charge sales tax on goods sold in Texas. In a statement Perry said:

I believe this legislation risks significant unintended consequences. My strong preference is to conduct a thorough policy discussion with Texas lawmakers, consumers, retailers and technology experts – and with other states and even the federal government – about interstate commerce and the structure of state sales taxes in the 21st century.

Last fall Texas State Comptroller Susan Combs presented Amazon.Com with a $269 million dollar sales tax bill. Combs argued that Amazon should have been collecting sales tax on goods sold in Texas because it maintains a distribution center in the state.

At that time Perry criticized the move after Amazon announced it would close its distribution center, citing an unfavorable regulatory environment.