WASHINGTON — States could force Internet retailers to collect sales taxes under a bill that overwhelmingly passed a test vote in the Senate Monday.Under current law, states can only require stores to collect sales taxes if the store has a physical presence in the state. As a result, many online sales are essentially tax-free, giving Internet retailers a big advantage over brick-and-mortar stores. Read More
Encouraging signs of support for sales tax ballot measures in San Mateo County could help provide Caltrain with a long-sought dedicated funding mechanism.
A recent survey found that 66 percent of San Mateo County voters would support a quarter-cent sales tax increase to provide funding for Caltrain and SamTrans. The poll, conducted at the behest of the San Mateo County Transit District, targeted residents likely to vote in the 2014 election. The transit district manages both SamTrans and Caltrain.
Gov. Jerry Brown has formally proposed a $7-billion-a-year increase in sales and income taxes to close the state’s chronic budget deficit.
Whether it will be the only tax increase on the November ballot is uncertain. Several others are in the works, and if they reach the ballot as well, voter confusion could doom all. But assuming that Brown’s stands alone, how would the campaign shape up? Read More
Gov. Jerry Brown wants to increase sales and income taxes in a quest to “find another $10 billion” in revenue. He will have to craft a plan soon to get it on the 2012 ballot. To help California’s struggling economy, any tax proposals should be rooted in sound economics, which appear to be lacking in the governor’s ideas.
When economists assess a state’s tax system, they look at three factors: tax burden, tax structure and tax distribution. California falls short in all three. Read More
‘Mayor Lee is banning all consultants who are working on mayoral campaigns from working on his ballot measures,” said the email I got exactly one month ago from a local consultant. Read More
San Francisco shoppers are in store for some wallet relief when the sales tax drops by 1 percent Friday, but the full discount might be short-lived.
One percent of the state sales tax is set to expire today after Gov. Jerry Brown and other Democrats abandoned hope of persuading Republican lawmakers to allow a vote on extending the tax. The move lowers San Francisco’s sales tax from the current 9.5 percent to 8.5 percent. Read More
If the state’s sales tax is slashed by 1 percent, Mayor Ed Lee wants voters to approve a city sales tax replacement in November. Lee is expected to discuss putting on the ballot a city sales tax measure when he submits his budget proposal to the Board of Supervisors later this week.The mayor said if Gov. Jerry Brown is unable to extend a 1 percent state sales tax, “we would possibly consider doing one of our own here to make up the difference. So it wouldn’t be a new tax.” Read More
California Board of Equalization Chairwoman Betty Yee, who represents the Bay Area, said May sales tax allocations to local governments will increase 3.7 percent due to positive growth in statewide cash receipts during the first quarter.
Since 2008, the board has been cutting advance sales tax payments to municipalities as the economy declined.
Increases in receipts from used-car sales, department stores and gasoline retailers prompted the board to raise the amount. Read More