Mandatory or unconstitutional?: House debates bill that would tax online sales

Updated: Apr. 3, 2018 at 8:39 PM HST
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HAWAII (HawaiiNewsNow) - The House amended a bill Tuesday whose topic of taxing online sales continues to be a big issue at the Capitol — and may even lead to lawsuits from internet companies.

Web-based companies like Amazon don't have stores in Hawaii, and the senate is proposing a bill that would tax shipments by any company that makes more than $100,000 in annual sales.

State Tax Director Linda Chu Takayama thinks that the tax should be a given.

"They owe the tax," Takayama said. "So the challenge is how do we collect it."

"How do we ... get them to voluntarily pay the tax that they owe?," Takayama said.

However some experts believe that taxing goods traveling between states violates the U.S. constitution.

The amended bill means that the topic of internet taxes will most likely be debated until the end of the session.

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