Pennsylvanians’ online shopping sprees won’t be tax-free for much longer. Starting September 1st, online retailers with nexus – or a physical presence – in the state must collect and remit sales taxes. In an interview with Radio PA, state Revenue Secretary Dan Meuser said they are simply enforcing the existing law. “The governor has pledged no new taxes. The governor is not going to raise taxes. However, we are going to administer and enforce the laws fairly on all taxpayers.”
Mueser says the enforcement effort is more about tax fairness than revenue generation, but he does estimate that it will result in an additional $55-million dollars in sales tax collections per year.
The strictly enforced system is intended to be fairer to Pennsylvania’s brick & mortar retailers. “Those companies on Main Street tend to do most of the hiring and employment and living in our communities, so it’s simply not fair for us not to enforce the laws appropriately,” Meuser says.
Businesses were notified of the enforcement effort last December. The original February compliance deadline was pushed back until September, and Meuser says there will be no more extensions.
While he declined to discuss specific companies, Meuser does expect former e-commerce companies, both large and small, to be collecting and remitting sales taxes as of September 1st.