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Fort Wayne-area lawmakers use Cyber Monday to push for online sales tax

Monday, November 26, 2012 - 6:25 pm

Northeast Indiana politicians and business leaders are using “Cyber Monday” as a chance to push for the state to require online retailers such as Amazon to collect sales taxes.

Under a deal reached between outgoing Gov. Mitch Daniels and Amazon in January, the retailer would not have to start collecting the sales tax until 2014. But some lawmakers and business leaders say the exemption is unfair to brick-and-mortar stores.

Two area lawmakers are scheduled to join the Greater Fort Wayne Chamber of Commerce on Monday – the unofficial first day of online Christmas shopping – to promote legislation that would start imposing the sales tax on Web retailers in July.

The sales tax exemption for Amazon dates to a 2007 deal for the online giant to open its first warehouse in Indiana. At the time, the state promised not to require online retailers to collect the 7 percent tax.

State Rep. Kathy Heuer, R-Columbia City, and Rep. Matt Lehman, R-Berne, are scheduled to join business lobbyists Monday at the Chamber's offices in downtown Fort Wayne to discuss the matter.

House Republican leadership blocked legislation earlier this year that would have moved up the date on which Amazon must start collecting the sales tax.