Retailers Celebrate Senate Marketplace Fairness Act Vote
Bipartisan Majority Overwhelming Supports Level Playing Field for Main St. Retailers
Arlington, VA – The Retail Industry Leaders Association (RILA) issued the following statement in response to a vote in the United States Senate related to the Marketplace Fairness Act, legislation aimed at giving states the power – if they so choose - to better enforce their sales tax laws and to level the playing field for Main Street merchants.
The Senate voted to invoke cloture on the managers’ amendment to the bill, which is sponsored by Senators Mike Enzi (R-WY) Richard Durbin (D-IL), Lamar Alexander (R-TN) and Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND). The vote foreshadows final passage of the Marketplace Fairness Act.
“Today’s vote in the Senate is proof that the special treatment of big online businesses at the expense of retailers on Main Street will soon be a thing of the past,” said Bill Hughes, senior vice president for government affairs. “The overwhelmingly bipartisan support for leveling the playing field is rare in today’s political environment and paves the way for a level playing field once and for all.”
“For too long the Main Street retailers that are an integral part of their communities have faced tax rules that put them at a disadvantage to their out of state, online-only competitors. The Marketplace Fairness Act would simply provide states with the power, if they choose to use it, to ensure that the market, not government, determines winners and losers,” said Hughes. “We applaud the Senate for its support, thank the sponsors for their steadfast commitment to fairness, and look forward to final passage and working with the House to level the playing field for all merchants this year.”
The Marketplace Fairness Act was outlined in RILA's 2013 public policy agenda as one of the top priorities for the industry: Retail Industry Leaders Association 2013 Public Policy Agenda: Empowering Retailers and Consumers to Grow the Economy.
Identical legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives introduced by Representatives Steve Womack (R-AR) and Jackie Speier (D-CA) has generated strong bipartisan support.
RILA is the trade association of the world’s largest and most innovative retail companies. RILA members include more than 200 retailers, product manufacturers, and service suppliers, which together account for more than $1.5 trillion in annual sales, millions of American jobs and more than 100,000 stores, manufacturing facilities and distribution centers domestically and abroad.