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LETTER: Eliminate the sales tax

To the Editor:

The governor wants to enforce the collection of the sales tax on Internet sales. It’s apparently unfair to require in-state businesses to collect sales taxes, while not requiring it from Internet sales.

As a skeptic, I am inclined to believe revenue—not fairness—is the prevailing motive. As Americans, we are culturally inclined to promote fairness, but it is difficult and not always possible.

It was unfair when our in-town stores were placed at a disadvantage by suburban shopping malls; traditional telephone companies have been disadvantaged by the introduction of cell phones.

It isn’t possible, nor is it the proper role of government, to protect businesses from the evolution of progress. Neither is it the role of government to unnecessarily hinder business, which it has done with the imposition of the sales tax.

What the governor is proposing is essentially an additional tax, as if we didn’t already have a sufficient number. Instead of taxing the Internet to help Maine businesses, let’s eliminate the sales tax to help Maine businesses.

Let’s level the taxation field and allow Maine businesses to compete fairly with New Hampshire.

Dick Sabine


One Response to “LETTER: Eliminate the sales tax”

  • Sten Wilson:

    Do you really believe Maine business would want to pay an %8.25 Business Profit Tax (BPT) as required in New Hampshire? Maine chooses to support a sales tax instead. Modern technology freely available on the Internet eliminates legacy tax burdens for businesses simplifying tax calculation, and remittance for any jurisdiction in any state. Why would I as a business owner choose to pay %8.25 of my hard earned profits as required in NH versus employ technology freely available that can handle tax processing for me eliminating the associated costs and burdens not only in my home state but for all participating states.

    This is in no way a new tax. Federal legislation requires all states to simplify their tax rates, definitions and remittance procedures prior to being granted the choice to enforce existing tax laws. Existing tax laws some states enacted since 1935 and almost every state currently requires for over fifty years.

    Federal legislation encourages adoption of new modern technologies promoting greater efficiencies for businesses, consumers and governments. Many states realize automating tax processing eliminates costly bureaucracies ensuring a greater percentage of every tax dollar honorably remitted funds intended programs we as tax payers all demand.

    Following New Hampshire’s tax policy would be a big mistake for Maine. Given the choice, I strongly urge Congress to immediately pass S.1832 the Marketplace Fairness Act.

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