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Mike Haridopolos: National Sales Tax Desired for Internet Sales

Senate President Mike Haridopolos said he would consider imposing a sales tax on Internet sales in the Sunshine State, as Florida TaxWatch has recommended.

However, he would prefer a national standard to keep a level playing field for all retailers to collect sales taxes on purchases made by residents.

At the end of the day, youre going to want to have that compact set up with all of the states to have uniformity, Haridopolos said, as it should be with tax issues or term limits. If its not uniform, youre going to have problems.

Earlier this month, California lawmakers approved a compromise bill that allows Amazon.com to delay collecting sales tax in California until September 2012.

Amazon, in exchange, agreed to drop its efforts to overturn the state law that required the online giant to begin collecting sales tax in July of this year on purchases made by California residents.

Haridopolos said Florida is open to talking with Amazon.com, which he noted has discussed building a facility in Florida, or any other company to discuss means to collect the tax without giving any retailer an advantage in the market.

If youre in a business online, or a mom and pop store down the street, you should have the same regulatory structure so that the government doesnt give an advantage to one over the other, Haridopolos said.

Last week, TaxWatch estimated that by implementing a sales tax on goods sold in Florida, the state would generate $50 million a year in revenue.

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