Senator Peters Wins National Recognition for Trying to Increase Taxes

Returning Republican District 9 Senator Deb Peters wins recognition as one of Governing‘s eight Public Officials of the Year… mostly for supporting more taxes:

In South Dakota, Peters has watched her state — which does not tax income and is thus dependent on the sales tax — see a steady decline in sales tax growth. She has testified multiple times before Congress on the issue and has been a leader in the so-called streamlined sales tax effort to make state tax codes similar to one another so that paying online sales taxes would be simpler for retailers.

Finally, the impatient Peters got tired of waiting on Congress. This year, in consultation with the governor and state attorney general, she wrote and shepherded through legislation that allows South Dakota to make online sales tax collections. Anticipating a lawsuit, the legislation was written in a way that fast-tracks the case through the courts. That was prescient: The first day the law went into effect, retailers immediately obliged by suing. It’s possible the case will make its way to the U.S. Supreme Court as early as next year. Considering the gridlock in Congress on the issue, it represents a chance, however uncertain, for states to see a reversal of the court’s 1992 decision that limited them to taxing only those sales by retailers based within their borders [link added; Liz Farmer, “Deb Peters—2016 Honoree,” Governing, 2016.11.14].

The more-tax legislation for which Senator Peters wins this honor is 2016 Senate Bill 106, the “Main Street Fairness Act,” which seeks to overturn the 1992 Quill Corp. v. North Dakota Supreme Court ruling that states can’t impose sales and use tax on retailers who don’t have physical storefronts in their states.

Good job on winning the recognition, Senator Peters, but… hmm… when this case finally hits a Trump-loaded Supreme Court, do you really think GOP-approved appointees will support higher taxes for online retail corporations?


4 Responses to Senator Peters Wins National Recognition for Trying to Increase Taxes

  1. We should all do what we can to help Senator Peters succeed in passing the Main Street Fairness Act. It is good public policy, and would go a long way toward funding public services – including education – in South Dakota.

  2. I should have read more closely. I see that did pass. What we should help with is getting congress to pass a law allowing states to collect sales taxes on online sales from sellers not having a physical presence in South Dakota.

  3. Roger Elgersma

    It is only fair that all retailers should pay and collect the same sales tax from each customer. This break for online retailers was to help start internet businesses. Well they are past the baby stage and should join the real world and pay the same as anyone else. And yes, that is fair for main street who is their competition. It is simply not fair for a business to have to pay a tax and the competition does not. I always have thought that the best thing for business is a level playing field. Many industries including farming where I grew up want special treatment that others do not get. But that is not fair. If Shantel wants to run on being fair to everyone is far better than some of the corruption that has come our way in this state. She also cleaned up some problems in the job she is now in. That is more important than just talking about cleaning up something that is someone elses job.

  4. We should all hope that young Ms. Peters joins the run for Governor, and uses her perch of control of all the monies in the legislatures to keep helping our fine state. Her grip on the taxes and such will be of great import to us all during the next sessions.