Tax free shopping at Amazon online is a thing of the past

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — If you’re thinking of buying something from Amazon, you may want to act quickly. Starting tomorrow, the online retailer will start collecting sales taxes in Ohio.

This past week, Amazon announced it would be building three data centers just outside Columbus. That will add 1,000 jobs to Central Ohio and add something else.

Now they have that location in the state of Ohio, Amazon is now required to collect that sales tax on the front end, and pay the state and the locals back.

The 5.75-percent sales tax that Ohio shoppers pay in stores will now apply to Amazon purchases. And state senator Joe Schiavoni said that’s fair.

“It will now be a little more competitive because the pricing will be more competitive, for the actual stores, with buying online,” ,” said State Senator Joe Schiavoni, (D) Boardman.

Store managers are glad to see Amazon collecting the same sales tax they collect.

In turn, they hope it will bring more people to their shops.

“I think it might be easier for them to shop at our store now, just because we are more one-on-one with the customers. So then they can spend the sales tax here, but then they have one-on-one with us,” said Chrissy Smith, Once Upon a Child store manager.

“It’s good. It can only help us. In the long term, it can only help other small businesses. And there’s more jobs as well. Everybody wins, I think,” said Randy Moy, All American Cards and Comics Manager.

Most of the shoppers WKBN spoke to here in Boardman are against amazon collecting the sales tax, though they wouldn’t go on camera.

Technically, people are already required to report sales taxes from their online shopping on yearly tax returns.

But the Ohio Department of Taxation says only one percent of people do. And that means they’re losing out on about $400 million a year in sales taxes.

The extended sales tax holiday for Amazon customers ends Sunday at midnight.



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