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Virginia Politics
Posted at 06:19 PM ET, 02/22/2012

‘Amazon loophole’ to close in Virginia

In a victory for traditional brick-and-mortar retailers, Amazon agreed to collect and pay sales tax on purchases made to Virginians.

Graphics of the Amazon Kindle tablets displayed at the September launch of the computer tablets in New York. (SHANNON STAPLETON - REUTERS)
Gov. Robert F. McDonnell’s office announced Wednesday that an agreement had been reached between his office, the online retailing giant, small businesses and several members of the General Assembly, which has been considering legislation to close the so-called Amazon loophole.

Amazon has faced criticism from state and federal officials for not paying state sales taxes. Other states have passed laws requiring the payments.

Virginia business groups started calling for legislation late last year, when it was announced that the online retail giant, which already operates a distribution center in Northern Virginia, would open two more in the Richmond area this fall.

In a prepared statement, McDonnell said the deal will “ensure that online retailers with a physical presence in Virginia are treated the same as traditional brick and mortar retailers who are already required to collect and remit existing sales taxes on goods sold in the Commonwealth.”

 Paul Misener, Amazon’s vice president of global policy, released a statement through McDonnell’s office thanking the governor “for his focus on Virginia jobs and for his efforts to work with other governors toward national resolution of the sales tax issue this year.” 

By  |  06:19 PM ET, 02/22/2012

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