Haslam hopes to negotiate sales tax deal with Amazon - WSMV News 4

Haslam hopes to negotiate sales tax deal with Amazon

Posted: Updated:

Gov. Bill Haslam is trying to broker a deal with Amazon.com over the online retailer and the state of Tennessee's sales tax.

Now that the company is building distribution centers here in the state, the uproar on the tax issue is only growing.

Gov. Haslam's administration is negotiating with the company that has millions of loyal customers but has been generating big controversy in Tennessee since former Gov. Bredesen cut a deal that it wouldn't have to collect sales tax from Tennessee customers.

That deal has created a ruckus, from brick and mortar businesses that compete with the online retailer to state lawmakers who are concerned about the erosion of the sales tax base.

"Of course I'd love to collect the sales tax. We live off sales tax revenue," Haslam said. "We think maybe there's a way that they can expand and grow here, and eventually again we collect sales taxes."

Pressure and tensions are mounting as local businesses continue to be very vocal about the issue. And several lawmakers have floated that idea of giving Amazon a grace period and then forcing the retailer to collect the tax.

But the governor says he wants a negotiated deal with Amazon, not something the legislature forces upon the company.

"I certainly would not like to see us to do that given the agreements we've made with Amazon in the past. I wouldn't want to see us do something that they didn't agree with," Haslam said.

Haslam says he's hoping to have an agreement by the time the legislature starts up in January. If not, state lawmakers will likely take up their own plan.

Copyright 2011 WSMV. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly
Powered by WorldNow CNN
All content © 2018, WSMV; Nashville, TN. (A Meredith Corporation Station) . All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, and Terms of Service, and Ad Choices.