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Missouri online sales tax bill heads to governor

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HANNIBAL (WGEM) -- The days of not having to pay sales tax when you buy online in Missouri may be coming to an end.

The Missouri House passed a bill that's now heading to Governor Parson's desk that would require out-of-state online stores to collect sales tax on residents' purchases.

Right now, Missouri is the only state that doesn't require such a tax.

In downtown Hannibal when you buy from any of the stores, you automatically pay sales tax.

However, if you bought the same product online from an out-of-state company, you might be able to get a better price because you wouldn't have to pay sales tax.

Local business owners said they hope this law, if signed, will help make them be more competitive.

With the some of the lowest gas and tobacco tax in the country in Missouri, it's no surprise a lot of Missourians don't like paying taxes.

While shoppers said it's a bummer to have to pay more, it's something they said they understood.

"I mean I think it will be [unfortunate to pay another tax], but also, you want to make sure that you support the town that you live in," said Missouri Shopper Rachel Robison.

She said she's on board with an online sales tax, especially after a hard year for local businesses.

"I know I've always said to support your local businesses because they're the ones who were affected the most throughout this," Robison said.

Charlee & Tru Boutique owner Madison Liter said she's had people comment on how certain items are cheaper online before, but that could change if this bill is signed into law.

"So it kind of levels out that playing field in between of, they weren't getting taxed online so maybe they were more eager to shop there instead of local," Liter said.

That's something Robison said she'd like to see.

"I mean, we all want to make sure that our town succeeds, you know, with everything. So why not support the local businesses," Robison said.

If Gov. Parson signs this bill into law, even if an online retailer isn't collecting that sales tax, you're still supposed to pay it.

The GOP-led House voted 145 -6 to send the bill to the Governor's desk. Both Republican representatives for the 5th and 4th district, Louis Riggs and Greg Sharpe, voted yes on the bill.

Online shopping tax bill passes Missouri house, local businesses react
Missouri set to require online stores to collect taxes

Frank Healy

Multimedia Journalist at WGEM

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