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Virginia Retailers Gather at General Assembly with Sales Taxes on Their Minds

(Richmond, Virginia)As Virginia’s lawmakers consider a bill that would level the playing field between online and brick and mortar retailers, business owners from across the commonwealth will descend on the General Assembly to discuss concerns with their local representatives.

The issue of e-fairness, that online retailers with a physical location in Virginia should be required to collect the same state sales taxes as traditional retailers, is top of mind right now.  Amazon.com has a warehouse in Sterling and is planning to build two distribution centers, one in Chesterfield County and another in Dinwiddie.  The company uses a loophole that allows it to avoid paying sales taxes.  According to a recent poll, nearly 60% of Virginians feel that is unfair.  Virginia Beach Senator Frank Wagner has introduced a bill (SB 597) to close the loophole, which is expected to be considered in early February.

Virginia Retail Merchants Association (VRMA), which has been representing businesses in Virginia for more than 100 years, will hold its annual “Retailer Day on the Hill” on Tuesday, January 31, 2012, with more than 200 attendees.

“This is a critical time for businesses in Virginia, both due to the e-fairness issue and a number of concerns related to the economy,” said VRMA President Laurie Aldrich.  “We expect spirited conversations between our retailers and their elected representatives.”

Retailers and representatives from the VRMA will meet with their Delegates and Senators throughout the day, beginning at approximately 10:00 a.m.

For more information on the e-fairness issue, please visit http://standwithmainstreet.com/virginia.

About VRMA
The Virginia Retail Merchants Association was established in 1905.  VRMA is a not-for-profit trade association representing retailers to educate, inform, and serve as a resource. VRMA and its retail member associations represent more than 5,400 retailers and other associated businesses throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia.  For more information, please visit www.virginiaretail.org.

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