New Sales Tax Could Revive Local Businesses - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

New Sales Tax Could Revive Local Businesses

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YAKIMA, Wash.- Washington is adopting a new local sales tax starting July 1st, 2008. Online companies will begin charging sales tax according to where merchandise is being delivered, not where it is purchased.                                                                                                              

This will affect retail stores that ship products and that sell merchandise online. The Yakima Department of Revenue says this could encourage more sales for local businesses.

" It is leveling the playing field because right now Washington state is losing $10 billion to purchases on the internet," said Rick Stedman from the Department of Revenue.

Washington will be the 22nd state to begin using this new tax code. The goals are to standardize sales taxes, focus on online retail business and ensure that companies shipping products are taxed appropriately.

"A lot of people will go to a local business, do a lot of research and then go buy it on the internet and not pay sales tax," said Stedman.

The new tax code is an attempt to stop people from doing this. One business owner says he experiences this all the time and that this is why he has been supporting this tax code for months.

"When I buy something on the internet, if I ever do, its only fair that I pay the tax where I'm getting the merchandise at. I think it's only fair everyone pay sales tax," said Dunbar Jewelers Owner Patrick Gilmore.

The Department of Revenue have been holding informational session over the past few months and will continue to do so.