Cape Girardeau mayor: Internet sales tax would ‘level playing field’ for small businesses

Cape Girardeau mayor: Internet sales tax would ‘level playing field’ for small businesses

CAPE GIRARDEAU, Mo. (KFVS) - A group of government advocates in Missouri say the lack of internet sales tax in the state, combined with the COVID-19 crisis, could bankrupt the local governments.

Stay-at-home orders and social distancing have pushed commerce online.

The Missouri Municipal League warned the lack of sales tax revenue will have a negative impact.

Without an internet sales tax in place, Cape Girardeau Mayor Bob Fox said he worries people may continue to do shopping online, even after the pandemic has passed.

“With this COVID-19 pandemic, and people staying at home shopping on the internet exclusively and not going back to merchants again, it’s totally unfair for somebody in local business to have to compete with somebody online when they have to sell items with sales tax, and online you don’t,” he said.

Mayor Fox went on to say an internet sales tax would “level the playing field” for local, small businesses.

Missouri is one of only two states without an online sales tax. The other is Florida.

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