Online Sales-Tax Bill to Get U.S. Senate Procedural Vote

The Senate will hold a procedural vote April 22 on a bill that would let states collect taxes on out-of-state sellers, including sales over the Internet and through catalogs, Majority Leader Harry Reid said today.

The bill, backed by Wal-Mart Stores Inc. and Inc., would let states collect some of the $24 billion in revenue they lose to untaxed sales made by retailers with no physical presence in their states. EBay Inc. and anti-tax groups such as Americans for Tax Reform oppose the measure.

The Senate took a 75-24 non-binding vote in favor of the proposal on March 22 as part of its debate on the federal budget.

Reid, a Nevada Democrat, earlier this week began the process of bypassing the Senate Finance Committee and bringing the measure directly to the floor. The committee’s chairman, Democrat Max Baucus of Montana, represents one of five states without a sales tax. He opposes the bill, S. 743.