SCOTUS ruling means more taxes for online shoppers in Illinois
While many said Thursday’s Supreme Court ruling allowing states to force online shoppers to pay sales taxes is a win for Illinois, Springfield’s budget director said there’s still work to be done so communities get what they deserve.
“I’m glad states will be able to tax online shopping because I think otherwise it was keeping a lot of revenue from the states,” online shopper Dolores Martin said.
While Illinois estimated bringing in roughly $200 million every year from online shoppers, early estimates show Springfield only gets a small portion of that.
"We expect to get somewhere in the neighborhood of $300,000 more a year once this is fully implemented," said Bill McCarty, director of Springfield's Office of Budget and Management. "If it were more like traditional sales tax at brick and mortar, we would get millions of dollars per year."
The city of Springfield gets about half of its funding from sales taxes.
McCarty said to prevent any further loss of revenue, lawmakers now need to look at changing how the tax dollars are doled out.
"We need to get to a point where e-commerce is treated like traditional brick and mortar here in Springfield," McCarty said. "So if I buy something, the sales tax I pay, we should get our portion like we always have."
While online shoppers may find themselves spending a little bit more, those in favor of Thursday’s ruling said they’re happy taxes they’re paying will be kept in the states they live in.
“Anytime a state receives more revenue, there’s going to be more money available to spend on the state infrastructure and state programs,” Martin said.