Legislature joins sales tax fight

Chandler

CONCORD – After Gov. Chris Sununu announced intentions last week to fight the internet sales tax that could result from a recent U.S. Supreme Court decision, members of the New Hampshire Legislature joined the battle Monday.

State Senate President Chuck Morse, R-Salem, and House Speaker Gene Chandler, R-Bartlett, confirmed the formation of a joint legislative task force to review potential legislation dealing with implications of the South Dakota v. Wayfair decision.

“New Hampshire is very proud to have no sales tax. Our retail business community thrives because of our ‘no sales tax’ environment. To ask our retailers to collect taxes for thousands of other jurisdictions would be a huge burden on them, and we want to identify ways to protect and defend them from the implications of this court decision,” Chandler said.

Rep. Norman Major, R-Plaistow, chair of the House Ways & Means committee, will chair the joint task force, while Senate Majority Leader Jeb Bradley, R-Wolfeboro, will serve as vice chair.

House members appointed to the task force include Rep. Pat Abrami, R-Stratham; Rep. Susan Almy, D-Lebanon; Rep. Richard Ames, D-Jaffrey; Rep. Barbara Griffin, R-Goffstown; Rep. Dick Hinch, R-Merrimack; Rep. Neal Kurk, R-Weare; Rep. Lynne Ober, R-Hudson; Rep. Bill Ohm, R-Nashua; and Rep. Stephen Shurtleff, D-Penacook.

Morse

Senators appointed include Sen. Kevin Avard, R-Nashua; Sen. Sharon Carson, R-Londonderry; Sen. Lou D’Allesandro, D-Manchester; Sen. Gary Daniels, R-Milford; Sen. Dan Feltes, D-Concord; and Sen. Bob Giuda, R-Warren.

“I’m very proud of the team of legislators we’ve assembled, all of whom bring a wealth of expertise on policy areas relative to this court decision. We are confident that their work over the coming weeks, reviewing legislation and hearing from stakeholders, will produce a recommendation on legislation that the House and Senate can swiftly on, should a special session be approved by the governor and executive council,” Chandler said.

“As a state without a sales tax, our businesses do not have a mechanism in place to collect sales taxes. Forcing these small businesses to comply with thousands of tax structures across the country is an onerous burden that they should not have to bear,” Morse said. “The creation of this task force is a first step towards protecting Granite State businesses from burdensome and unjust taxes from other states.”

Last week, Sununu said he would call on the Executive Council at the upcoming July 11 meeting to open a special legislative session solely to deal with the internet sales tax. Sununu wants to see the House and Senate pass legislation that will allow New Hampshire businesses to be free from improperly collecting sales taxes for other states.