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On December 18, 2015, President Barack Obama signed H.R. 2029 – Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2016. The Act extends the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) through October 1, 2016. Prior provisions that grandfather taxes that existed prior to October 1, 1998 are also extended through October 1, 2016. For our previous news item on this topic, see Internet Tax Freedom Act Extended Until December 11, 2015. (H.R. 2029 – Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2016)


The Louisiana Department of Revenue has announced that the Louisiana Tax Amnesty 2015 program, which was originally scheduled to run from November 16, 2015 through December 15, 2015, is suspended and will run from December 1, 2015 through December 31, 2015. Upon discovering a mistake with information included in some of the amnesty invitation letters, the Department decided to suspend the program until corrected letters are mailed. Impacted taxpayers will receive an updated letter from the Department by December 1. Any amnesty payments received on November 16th or 17th will be applied to the taxpayer’s account when the amnesty period resumes on December 1. Beginning November 23rd, taxpayers can call 1-866-782-9241 for more information about their amnesty account. The 2015 Tax Amnesty Program is the third and final program permitted by Louisiana’s Tax Delinquency Amnesty Act of 2013. Upon the conclusion of the 2015 amnesty program, the Department will offer no new amnesty programs until at least 2025. For additional details on the amnesty program view our previous news item Louisiana Amends Tax Amnesty Program. (Release, Louisiana Department of Revenue, November 18, 2015)


On September 30, 2015 the U.S. House of Representative passed H.R. 719, which includes a provision that would extend the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) through December 11, 2015. The ITFA was scheduled to expire on October 1, 2015. The bill will now go to President Obama for signature.


To see our previous news item on the ITFA, visit Internet Tax Freedom Act Extended Until October 1, 2015, Permanent Extension Introduced.


To see an update on this news item, visit Internet Tax Freedom Act Extended Through October 1, 2016,


(H.R. 719)


Louisiana has created the Sales Tax Streamlining and Modernization Commission in order to perform a study of Louisiana’s state and local sales tax systems and to make recommendations to the legislature regarding revisions of practices, administrative procedure, and statutory law and the Louisiana Constitution. The commission will conduct monthly meetings beginning no later than July 31, 2015 and will submit its report to the governor and the legislature no later than January 15, 2016. The commission’s report and recommendations will include: a study of how changes in state and local sales tax policy may better position Louisiana for the future in terms of equity and economic competitiveness;  a comparison of Louisiana’s state and local government sales tax bases and rates with those of other states with similar demographics and economies; a study and comparison of all special tax treatments against sales tax, including credits, deductions, discounts, exclusions, exemptions, and rebates; and a study and comparison of state and local government sales tax collection and audit procedures. The recommendations shall encompass an overall goal of ensuring both revenue stability and taxpayer equity through the adoption of proven contemporary tax policies. The policies shall be based on the concept of a low tax rate with a broad base to be administered fairly and efficiently.  The interim report is due by January 15, 2016. The commission will terminate on June 30, 2017.(Act 405 (H.B. 471), Laws 2015, effective July 1, 2015)


On June 15, 2015, Representative Jason Chaffetz (R-UT) introduced the Remote Transactions Parity Act (RTPA) of 2015 in the U.S. House of Representatives. The bill – similar to the Marketplace Fairness Act (MFA) of 2015 – pertains to sales and use taxcollection obligations for remote sellers, but the RTPA contains some differences and several additional provisions. Unlike the MFA’s $1 million small seller exception, the RTPA’s small seller exception is as follows: first year: $10 million; second year: $5 million; third year: $1 million. The exception goes away in the fourth year. Furthermore, under the RTPA sellers utilizing an electronic marketplace are not considered small sellers and are not entitled to the exception, no matter the year. Under the RTPA, sellers would not be audited by states where they don’t have a physical presence. There would be a three year statute of limitations for assessments on remote sellers. The bill would enable remote sellers to refund over-collected tax to customers. The RTPA also specifies that a state would not be authorized to impose a sales and use tax collection requirement on remote sellers until it has certified multiple software providers that are certified in all states seeking to impose authorization requirements. The RTPA would also allow customers to pursue refunds of over-collected tax from remote sellers. However, RTPA does not preempt states from imposing sales and use taxes on remote sellers that do not have physical presence under this definition. It merely authorizes states to impose sales and use tax on remote sellers without a physical presence. Under the RTPA, if a seller has nexus under existing law, including Quill v. North Dakota, then the state may still impose a sales and use tax collection requirement.  The bill is assigned to the Judiciary Committee just like the MFA.  On July 1, 2015 it was referred to the Subcommittee on Regulatory Reform, Commercial And Antitrust Law. (H.R. 2775, the Remote Transactions Parity Act of 2015)


UPDATE: This bill failed to pass during the 114th Congressional Session running from January 3, 2015 to January 3, 2017.  Therefore, this bill has died and would need to be reintroduced to be considered and voted on.



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