Internet Tax Commission to Meet June 21

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The Advisory Commission on Electronic Commerce will meet formerly for the first time on June 21 in Williamsburg, VA, to begin discussions on international, federal, state, and local tax policy guidelines for online commerce.


The Commission was created last year when Congress passed a three-year moratorium on new Internet taxes. The guidelines will be delivered to Congress by April 2000.


Struggles will inevitably take place, according to Stanley Sokul, senior consultant at the Association for Interactive Media and a member of the commission who spoke at the DMA's 1999 Government Affairs Conference earlier this month.


State and local reps are expected to push for a national Internet use tax, and reject the Quill Decision -- which prohibits states from collecting sales tax from a direct marketer unless the direct marketer has a physical presence there -- while the business reps will probably try to focus on how states are dragging the Internet down.


Sokul also said that the Internet will transform the Quill debate, "not so much because of the Internet hype that allows these states to get new momentum [for] their argument, but because the Internet is going to bring a whole new set of players into this fight."


The 19-member commission has named Virginia's Republican governor James Gilmore chairman. The commission also includes William Daley, secretary of commerce; Richard Parsons, president of Time/Warner; Michael Armstrong, chairman/CEO of AT&T; Michael Leavitt, Republican governor of Utah; and Gary Locke, Washington's Democratic governor.

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