Should online retailers have to charge state sales tax?

01/11/2013 | Bloomberg Businessweek

Online merchants may need to start collecting state sales tax if lawmakers choose to act on the issue. Legislation to that effect stalled in the 2012 Congress, but it did manage to get support from members of both major political parties. "Most e-commerce companies require little in the way of state-provided services and infrastructure, so it doesn't make much sense to collect a sales tax," said Ken Johnson, who runs an online underwear company. However, Carol Peppe Hewitt, who co-owns a pottery business, said, "We need to level the playing field."

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